Former Real Madrid midfielder Xabi Alonso has said the desire shown by Pep Guardiola to sign him for Bayern Munich convinced him to move to he German champions.
The veteran midfielder left the Santiago Bernabeu shortly before the end of the transfer window for 10 million euros in somewhat of a shock move, bringing an end to his five-year stay in the Spanish capital.
Many pundits at the time suggested the arrival of Toni Kroos – from Bayern Munich – had prompted Alonso to question whether he would still be a first teamer at the club and was behind his decision to leave having played an integral part in Los Blancos’ Champions League success in May.
But speaking to Goal.com, Alonso revealed it was Guardiola’s infectious personality and his desire to get his man that made up his mind.
“There are lots of opinions on my reason for moving in Spain,” he said. “But the fact is that I wanted a restart. For me, it was the right decision for my career. It had nothing to do with transfers or with Toni Kroos. Carlo Ancelotti trusted me and he knew that I would play an important role. There were no problems in Madrid.”
And he continued: “It was no easy decision but I thought that the right moment had come. Real Madrid are a big club. Now I had the chance to get to know another big club, in a new country, to experience new things. For me, it was the last chance to join Bayern. When I had made up my mind, I talked to the club officials at Real. They respected my decision and wanted to support me.”