Xabi Alonso has named Jamie Carragher as the Liverpool player he got on with the best, although he admits he enjoyed provoking the Reds hero.
Bayern Munich midfielder Alonso spent five years at Anfield after joining the club from Real Sociedad in 2004.
The Spaniard believes the 2009 squad was the best he has played in throughout his career, while he also hailed the influence of the spine of players which were in place when he arrived.
“Carra [Jamie Carragher], Stevie [Gerrard], Sami [Hyypia] and Didi [Hamman] were all huge influences on everyone else. All different characters, strong personalities. When each one of them spoke, I listened,” he told The Guardian.
“They helped me improve as a player and as a person, and when I went back to Spain to play for the national team I felt a lot stronger through the experiences shared with them.”
“I liked Carra the most,” he continues. He is the biggest Scouser in the world. We got on well from day one. I think he realised that I loved football and he loves football too.
“We would watch games together and talk about it every day. I think he respected that I would enter arguments with him.
“He was always very loud; you could hear his voice above everyone else’s. I would say, ‘Carra, shut the f**k up, you have no idea!’ He liked all of that: the confrontation.”