Alonso reveals he’s ‘staying’ at Leverkusen after links to ‘big club’ Liverpool; Bayern hold De Zerbi ‘talks’

Joe Williams
Liverpool manager targets Xabi Alonso and Roberto De Zerbi
Xabi Alonso and Roberto De Zerbi have both been linked to Liverpool and Bayern Munich.

Xabi Alonso has informed the Bayer Leverkusen squad that he has turned down interest from Liverpool and Bayern Munich to remain at the club.

The Reds are on the lookout for a new manager after Jurgen Klopp announced earlier this year that he will be leaving Anfield at the end of the season to take a break from football.

Xabi Alonso: My job at Bayer is not over

Alonso had emerged as the favourite to replace Klopp at Liverpool with Bayern Munich also understood to be very keen on making the Spaniard their manager.

However, former Liverpool midfielder Alonso confirmed on Friday that he will be staying at Bayer Leverkusen as he looks to continue learning at the Bundesliga leaders.

Alonso told reporters: “I had a good meeting with Bayer Leverkusen and I informed them that I will stay and continue at the club. After lot of talks about my future, I used the break to reflect and make my decision. This is the place to be for me.

“My job at Bayer is not over. I want to help the club, help the players to develop, the board is great… it’s all fantastic here. I’m still young coach but I think this is the best decision for my future. I took my time and I’m sure about that.

READ MORE: Mediawatch: Liverpool take Alonso rejection as hilariously badly as Newcastle with ‘stained’ Ashworth exit

“I’m grateful to Bayer and the board, the players, the fans… I feel that this is the best way, to continue together. I have also informed the players, it’s true. My deadline was this week, it’s matter of respect. Now everything is clear.

“I’m not gonna comment about Liverpool or Bayern. These are big clubs and I’ve strong links with them but I’m in the place where I want to be. It’s not time to decide my future now, I want to develop at Bayer Leverkusen.”

Roberto De Zerbi ‘has had conversations with Bayern Munich’

Brighton boss Roberto De Zerbi is now one of the top targets for the Liverpool board this summer but La Liga and Serie A insider Matteo Moretto confirms that the Premier League side will face competition from Bayern Munich for the Italian manager.

Moretto wrote in his Caught Offside column: “He has a release clause that is close to €14m, and Brighton are in talks to extend his contract, which will involve a salary hike and more powers at the club. De Zerbi has opportunities to leave though.

“He has had conversations with Bayern Munich, and he is one of the options that they are following closely and like the most, but de Zerbi, if he has the chance, would like to remain in the Premier League.

“Obviously, he’s delighted with the interest from Bayern Munich, and if they go after him with everything, then there’s little debate. However he knows that offers could be on the way from England, and he wants to wait and see what is on the table. He will go with the project that convinces him the most.

“I know that he will have talks with Liverpool, he could also be an option for other English clubs. De Zerbi is between a renewal at Brighton, Bayern Munich and Premier League teams – Liverpool, and one other club could come in for him.”