There had been suggestions that this could be Xabi Alonso’s last season, and the Bayern Munich midfielder made it official on Thursday.
Alonso will without a doubt go down as one of the best midfielders of his generation. Over a glittering seventeen year career, he has won nine major honours at club level as well as starring on the Spain teams that dominated international football from 2008 to 2012.
The 35-year-old won league titles in Spain and Germany, as well as the Champions League with both Liverpool and Real Madrid, and has cup triumphs in England, Germany, and Spain. Alonso was also vital to Spain’s wins at Euro 2008 and 2012 and, of course, the 2010 World Cup.
Even at an individual level, Alonso has not gone without recognition, being named the Spanish Player of the Year in 2003 and La Liga’s best midfielder in 2012. He was also named on the FIFA FIFPro World XI in 2011 and 2012, the UEFA Euro 2012 Team of the Tournament and the 2013-14 UEFA Champions League Team of the Season.
Here’s a look at the top ten moments of Alonso’s decorated career.