Photography by Rafael de Pazos

Xabi Alonso

Player, Liverpool, 2004-2009

“On the road to Istanbul, the key game was against Olympiakos. That was the first magic night at Anfield that I lived”

Xabi Alonso’s arrival at Liverpool from Real Sociedad in 2004 marked the beginning of a new era at Anfield under their new manager Rafael Benítez. Over the next five years, the Spanish midfielder became a firm favourite of the Anfield faithful, playing an integral role in the team’s historic victory in the 2005 Champions League final. He added UEFA Super Cup and FA Cup winners’ medals before leaving for Real Madrid in 2009.

In this exclusive interview with The Coaches’ Voice, Alonso reflects on his journey with Liverpool, his motivations for joining Benítez at the club, the relationships that helped make his move from Spain to the Premier League easier, and the impact the Anfield atmosphere had on Liverpool when they needed it most.

Xabi Alonso


Xabi Alonso

How do you defend against Lionel Messi? What are the benefits of playing alongside Cristiano Ronaldo? In his Masterclass, Xabi Alonso explains all as he describes his respective playing roles at Liverpool, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich
Ian Rush

Taking chances

Liverpool legend Ian Rush on the iconic managers he played for, his time in charge at Chester City and why he loves coaching strikers
Pako Ayestarán

Making magic

Former Liverpool coach Pako Ayestaran on partnering Rafa Benitez all the way to the Champions League final