Alonso: Mourinho will thrive

Xabi Alonso believes Real Madrid boss Jose Mourinho is 'made for' games like the clash with Manchester United but is expecting a tough test at the Bernabeu.

Last Updated: 11/02/13 at 12:26 Post Comment

Jose Mourinho: Backed to thrive in blockbuster tie by Alonso

Jose Mourinho: Backed to thrive in blockbuster tie by Alonso

The two European heavyweights will collide on Wednesday night when the Primera Liga giants host United in the first leg of their last 16 UEFA Champions League tie.

Alonso feels manager Mourinho thrives on blockbuster encounters like this one but knows Sir Alex Ferguson will be just as up for the challenge.

He told The Times: "Mourinho is made for games like this one against United.

"The way he prepares the game, the way he analyses the opponents, the way he approaches us in terms of giving us a psychological edge and extra motivation, he loves these occasions."

Ex-Liverpool man Alonso added: "They have that United thing: it is hard to put into words, but it means that they are always competitive against anyone.

"It is probably a Ferguson thing, because he is them and they are him, the team has taken on his psychology.

"He is that edge and that transmits from him to his players, something that I saw at first hand during my Liverpool years.

"So we are expecting a very intense, difficult tie."

Passion

After previously spending five seasons at United's fierce rivals Liverpool, Alonso insists he will welcome any stick that comes his way from the Old Trafford faithful in the second leg and admits he misses the passion of the Premier League fans.

"Bring it on!" he added. "I accept that and I will kind of enjoy it as well, somehow.

"I suppose it will make me proud because it means that people still remember my link with Liverpool.

"I know that whenever I play at Old Trafford I am going to get that kind of stick because that is the banter of the Premier League.

"Going to Old Trafford with Liverpool was always a special occasion and it will be the same this time with Real Madrid, no matter what they sing about me.

"That kind of passion is one of the things I miss about England."

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

W

riting a minute by minute account on Berbatov would be like chronicling the days of the guy punished for sloth in the movie Se7en. Day 4 - lay in bed, did nothing - 15th minute, stood there did nothing .

lustral
Taking A Close Look At Mario...

W

hen players in their 30s leave Real Madrid, it's usually to Bolton Wanderers. I miss those days.

sailingmagpie
Top Ten CL Players Whetting Our Appetite

W

ow Pete, you would make an excellent stalker!

fouloleron
Taking A Close Look At Mario...

Footer 365

Felix Magath departs Fulham with Kit Symons taking charge on temporary basis

Felix Magath has left his role as Fulham manager after the Championship club's dismal start to the season.

Stoke boss Mark Hughes defends his decisions at QPR ahead of Loftus Road return

Stoke manager Mark Hughes has defended his reign at QPR ahead of his return to Loftus Road on Saturday.

Southampton midfielder Sadio Mane has been granted a work permit

Ronald Koeman has confirmed that Sadio Mane has been successful in gaining a work permit.

Mail Box

Why Doesn't Rodgers Play Borini?

One Liverpool supporter thinks this could be Fabio Borini's year, whilst we also have thoughts on the Red Bulls, Welbeck vs Gervinho and Paul Lambert's new deal...

Could Arsenal Benefit From Top Four Exit?

That's one idea in the morning mailbox as the Arsene Wenger debate rumbles on. Plus, comparing Welbeck to Gervinho and some advice for Greg Dyke and the FA...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property