January 27, 2023

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– Soul, stands, lights. It’s football in its purest form!

This afternoon, the stage was set for the second game of the Legend of the North derby between Liverpool legends and Manchester United legends.

In midfield, Momo Sissoko and Xabi Alonso started with Liverpool in a 2-1 win over their traditional rivals. The Spaniard thinks it was great to be back at Anfield, as captain!

– loved it. It’s been a while since I’ve played matches like this, the maestro tells Liverpoolfc.com.

Alonso retired as a footballer in 2017 at Bayern Munich. In the past, the Spaniard has also played for Real Sociedad, Real Madrid and of course Liverpool. The 40-year-old loved feeling like a football match again.

Anfield Young: Xabi Alonso is still a very popular player among the fans, even though he left the club more than 13 years ago.

Every time you get the chance, something inside of you wakes up. It was a great environment for the match, good atmosphere and the best stadium in the world. what a day!

Alonso played five seasons with Liverpool. During that time, he won the Champions League final as a youth in 2005, playing 210 matches in the red jersey. He missed the club, especially Anfield, after moving to Real Madrid in 2009.

Anfield is another thing. You have great stadiums all over the world with good atmosphere, Champions League nights, but this is Anfield. Soul, stands, lights. It is football in its purest form. And that’s why I love being here as a player and as a supporter, he says.

It’s been five years since Alonso closed the door to more professional play, but his foot was still there against Manchester United. The Spaniard dominated the match in style familiar from midfield, showing off his repertoire with some impressive long passes.

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It does not change, although a lot of other things do. Legs and strength aren’t quite there anymore, but as long as you have the understanding, you’ll always be fine. As long as I can enjoy myself while playing, I will always want to come back.

2005: Xabi Alonso scored Liverpool's 3-3 goal in Istanbul, and he will forever remain in the club's history books.

In 2005: Xabi Alonso scored Liverpool’s 3-3 goal in Istanbul, and he will forever remain in the club’s history books.

We are confident of a good season with Liverpool

The Spaniard is also closely watching how things are going with Liverpool, even though he has long since left the club. It’s a regular occurrence for many players who have donned the red jersey at Anfield. Of course, he also followed last year’s record season.

The Liverpool game is all about the quality they have, both tactically and dynamically. Last year it required a team that wanted to be on top everywhere. It’s not easy, says Alonso.

He believes the Reds can return to the level they once were. It hasn’t gone smoothly in the Premier League or the Champions League yet.

It’s a tough challenge every year, but I’m sure this team can handle it. The players, support staff and coach are great. He concludes that there is still a lot that can happen (this season) and I’m sure they will be there.