Bayer Leverkusen coach Xabi Alonso on Friday dismissed speculation he could replace Jurgen Klopp at Liverpool.
Klopp made the surprise announcement on Friday he would leave the club he joined in 2015, saying he was “running out of energy.”
Alonso, a former Liverpool player whose unbeaten Leverkusen side this season sits four points clear of Bayern Munich at the top of the Bundesliga table.
He has been linked to a return to the club where he won the 2005 Champions League as a player.
Saying the “speculation is normal”, Alonso told reporters, “At the moment I am really happy here… I’m not thinking about May, I’m thinking about tomorrow’s game.
“Each day is a challenge, each game is a challenge and were are on an intense and beautiful journey here in Leverkusen.”
Alonso release clause
However, German media has reported that 42-year-old Alonso has a clause in his contract that allows him to leave for one of his former clubs – Liverpool, Real Madrid, and Bayern Munich – should an opportunity arise.
“I am not thinking about the next step,” he said.
“I am thinking about where I am right now – I am in a great place and I am enjoying myself. And I think it’s the right place, so that’s all I can say.
“What’s going to happen in the future? I don’t know and I don’t really care at the moment.”
Delightfully, Alonso praised Klopp, saying he has “huge respect and great admiration for what Jurgen did for the last nine years in Liverpool – and how he did it.”
Leverkusen waxing strong
Leverkusen have dropped just six of a possible 54 points this season and have won every one of their Europa League and German Cup fixtures.
They face Borussia Moenchengladbach at home on Saturday.
Aside from Alonso, Brighton and Hove Albion coach, Roberto DeZerbi and former Real Madrid coach, Zinedine Zidane are among other coaches linked to Liverpool’s job.
Notably, Klopp took over as Reds boss in October 2015 and his contract was due to run until 2026 but two days after qualifying Liverpool for another Wembley final, he informed the club of his decision to quit.
“I told the club already in November,” Klopp told Liverpool’s website.
Meanwhile, Klopp led Liverpool to their first league title in 30 years in 2019-20, having won the Champions League the previous season.
He also lifted the FIFA Club World Cup, FA Cup, League Cup, and UEFA Super Cup, as well as the FA Community Shield during his nine-year stay at Anfield.