Xabi Alonso opens up on future

Bayer Leverkusen boss Xabi Alonso used his press conference ahead of the second leg of the Europa League semi-final against AS Roma to put all the rumours surrounding his future to bed.

The Spanish coach made it half-clear not long ago, but his impressive season as Leverkusen’s head coach has led to further rumours of a move at the end of the season.

Alonso says that he will remain at the BayArena next season and, in the process, put to bed a subject that threatened to take the club’s focus away from what is undoubtedly the most important clash of its most recent era.

When asked about it, he cleared up any doubts. “Yes, that’s right,” he replied when a journalist asked if he could confirm that he would remain in charge of the club for the 2023/24 season.

The former Real Madrid player, 41, added: “I am very happy with both the team and the club in general. I’m not thinking about my future.”

Looking ahead to the clash against José Mourinho’s Roma this week, where the Bundesliga outfit need to come from 1-0 down from the first leg, Alonso said: “The experience of the first leg will help us. We need to find the balance between intensity, passion and a good defence. Roma are a strong opponent, but if we give everything in our stadium and with our fans we can do it. I feel that energy in the team and we will give everything until the end.”

Kieran Quaile | GSFN

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