Former Liverpool midfielder Xabi Alonso is being viewed as a possible successor to Carlo Ancelotti at Real Madrid.
That’s according to ESPN, who claim that Alonso’s appointment at Bayer Leverkusen is being ‘watched with interest’ by those at the Spanish club.
The 40-year-old spent five years at both Liverpool and Real Madrid. As a result of his time at the Bernabeu, he’s said to be a ‘potential candidate’ for whenever Ancelotti leaves.
Alonso is reportedly viewed as ‘fitting the profile’ of a future Madrid manager. The World Cup winner got off to the best possible start with a 4-0 win over Schalke last weekend. Unfortunately, this was followed up with a 3-0 Champions League loss against Porto in midweek.
All eyes on Xabi
It was just a couple of weeks ago that Alonso was back at Anfield playing for the Liverpool Legends. Just a short while later and he’s bagged his first ever senior job in management.
As well as the watchful eyes from Madrid, there will no doubt be a few in Liverpool who are also keeping tabs on his Leverkusen side.
The Reds will surely be succession planning for the end of Jurgen Klopp’s current contract in 2026. With his connection to the club, Alonso will be viewed in some quarters as a natural successor.
Of course, the same has long been thought of Liverpool icon Steven Gerrard. But as Gerrard’s difficult time with Aston Villa is showing, nothing is a given in football.
As things stand, those who want to see Gerrard succeed Klopp are probably in a minority. Four years is a long time in football though, and the door is likely still open for Stevie.
By that token, it will be open to Alonso too. But seeing as it’s still a number of years before the Liverpool post may be vacant, the Reds may already be too late.
Despite his success at the club, it’s hard to see Ancelotti staying in Madrid for another four years. As a result, they’ll probably need to replace him much sooner than Liverpool will Klopp.
So, if Alonso proves to be the bright young thing that people seem to be expecting, he could be on his way back to Spain before too long. Level-headed as he is though, he’ll know he has plenty of work to do before then.