Bayer Leverkusen chief Simon Rofles has insisted that he does not see Xabi Alonso leaving the club to replace Jurgen Klopp at Liverpool next season. Alonso, a former Reds player, has made an excellent start to his managerial career and has been linked with a return to Anfield in the summer.
Alonso has enjoyed a stellar campaign in charge of Leverkusen, who currently sit five points clear at the top of the Bundesliga table. They have not lost a league game all season and took a giant leap towards the title by securing a comfortable 3-0 win over Bayern Munich, their closest challengers, on Saturday.
The Spaniard has already been put forward as the early favourite to succeed Klopp, who recently announced that he will be stepping down as Liverpool boss in the summer. However, Rofles is confident that Alonso will stay at Leverkusen next season regardless of whether or not the Reds come calling.
Asked if he believes the club will retain Alonso’s services in the summer, Rofles told SPORT1: “Yes. I’m sure. One [reason] is the contract. The other thing is how comfortable he feels, the family, himself and that he knows what he has in the club. He also has a very good team, we will have a very good perspective next year and there is no change in the team.
“We will definitely have a top team available next year. These are all points that, in addition to contracts, coaches like Xabi but also players who arouse interest from other clubs often keep us with us.”
Alonso was recently quizzed on the topic of joining Liverpool next season and was quick to insist that he remains happy at Leverkusen, although he stopped short of directly ruling out a future move to Anfield.
“At the moment I’m really happy here, I’m enjoying my work,” he said. “Each day it’s a challenge & we are on a beautiful journey here in Leverkusen. To be honest, I am not in that moment to think about the next step. I am thinking about where I am right now.”
When asked if that meant he would definitely be at Leverkusen next season, Alonso replied: “That’s a direct question! I don’t have a direct answer. I’m happy here right now, that’s for sure, and only thinking about Leverkusen.”
The former Liverpool and Real Madrid midfielder has previously expressed an interest in managing the Reds, telling talkSPORT in 2018: “Yeah, for sure I have dreamt of it. I have to prove myself and first I would need to prepare, but if I decide somewhere I want to take my chances as a manager…
“My link, my commitment and my passion with Liverpool is there. Why not? We will see if we can cross paths in our ways.”