London, Sep 3 (ANI): Spanish midfielder Xabi Alonso, who knew that his time at Liverpool was up a year ago, has now revealed the full details behind a dramatic 28 million pounds Anfield exit.
Alonso admits the decision to skip a Champions League match for the birth of his son almost three years ago caused a rift with manager Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez.
And the midfielder admits he found it hard to accept being classed as a cash cow when Benitez tried to sell him a year ago, The Sun reports.
Alonso, 27, is now one of the next generation of Real Madrid ‘Galacticos’ after his switch last month. But only now has he spoken out about his relationship with fellow Spaniard Benitez – and the joy of feeling wanted at Real.
“It was a tough call and a very difficult decision to make after five years at the club. I have always said that it has been a professional relationship. I have always tried to do what he asked me to do, to try to deliver on the pitch, to do the talking on the pitch,” he said.
Benitez made no secret of wanting to bring Gareth Barry to the club from Aston Villa last year.
Alonso was identified as the valuable asset to fund the move. The deal did not materialise and Barry ended up joining Manchester City in the most recent transfer window.
“Last summer when the club proposed I had to be sold to get funds to sign new players. It was difficult to accept that. I accept it as a professional but that moment probably changed my mind – and I thought, maybe, from that moment it was maybe time for a change,” Alonso said.
Benitez did little to disguise his displeasure with playmaker Alonso when he opted out of a Champions League last-16 second leg at Inter Milan with Liverpool leading 2-0 to be with his pregnant wife.
Alonso said: “When the birth of my child happened, I had to make a decision. I had to be with my family as it was a very important moment.” (ANI)