Xabi Alonso has been coached by some of the managerial legends of modern-day football – Rafael Benitez, Carlo Ancelotti, Pep Guardiola, and Jose Mourinho. It’s fair to say he’s learned from the best.
So while there’s no guarantee, despite his success as a player, that he’ll be a good manager, Alonso’s days spent imbibing knowledge from modern masters should serve him in good stead.
The former Liverpool, Real Madrid, and Bayern Munich midfielder has taken just four months since his retirement to announce his intentions to become a manager, and there were already suggestions, however subdued, that he could come straight back to the club he departed in the summer.
The Bayern job is available following Carlo Ancelotti’s sacking last week but Jupp Heynckes is the favourite to return to the Bundesliga giants for another spell after signing off with a treble-winning season in 2013. Alonso however, has been tipped to find a place on the German’s coaching staff.
The Spaniard revealed that he spent his last couple of seasons as a player taking down notes and mentally planning training sessions, and also has a clear idea of what he thinks makes a good manager, citing communication as the key.
“The main quality of a manager is to be able to take the best out of each player,” Alonso said.
“If you are not able to deliver your passion, your idea, to the group to the players…you don’t have many chances to succeed.”
It shouldn’t be long before Alonso gets the chance to implement his vision soon.
Uruguay striker Edinson Cavani has played down his penalty-taking spat with Paris Saint-Germain team-mate Neymar.
Cavani and Brazilian Neymar, the world’s most expensive player, reportedly fell out over penalty-taking duties for PSG in recent league matches.
The despite blew up a couple of weeks ago when Cavani, PSG’s regular penalty-taker, refused to let Neymar take a spot-kick against Lyon, only to then miss.
But then at the weekend, and after rumours Cavani had been offered a million euros to cede penalty duties to his higher-profile team-mate, Neymar took, and scored, a spot-kick against Bordeaux.
“These things happen in football. These are things that are sometimes blown up,” Cavani, speaking to reporters in Caracas ahead of a World Cup qualifier against Venezuela on Thursday, said on Monday.
“We all know that they become bigger than they are. They are sorted out in the dressing room. Every (problem) has a solution. It’s calmed down.”
Despite giving up spot-kick duties, which Cavani took over when Zlatan Ibrahimovic left PSG a year and a half ago, the Uruguayan has still outscored his Brazilian team-mate eight goals to six in France’s Ligue 1.
Manchester United striker Romelu Lukaku entered a not guilty plea on Monday after being cited for holding a rowdy party at his rented Beverly Hills mansion in July.
A lawyer for Lukaku, who was not required to be in court in Los Angeles, entered the plea on the player’s behalf during a brief hearing before commissioner Jane Godfrey.
The case was adjourned for a pre-trial hearing at Los Angeles Airport Courthouse on November 21. Lukaku can opt not to appear in court for the misdemeanor case.
Beverly Hills Police Department said earlier this year Lukaku was issued with a citation for excessive noise.
It came after police officers responded to five other noise complaints from the same location.
The Belgian international – who clinched a money-spinning transfer to Manchester United from Everton in July – had been staying in Los Angeles with France and Manchester United star Paul Pogba on holiday.
Lukaku is the Premier League’s top scorer this season with seven goals.
Provided by AFP Sport