Bayern Munich midfielder and former Liverpool player, Xabi Alonso has announced his intentions to retire from professional football at the end of the season.
The former Spain international has played 27 games for Bayern Munich this season and was also present for the full 180 minutes in the 10-2 aggregate thrashing of Arsenal.
There had been speculation earlier in the season, that the 35-year-old was considering retirement along with Lahm, but nothing was official until now.
Alonso tweeted on Thursday morning: “Lived it. Loved it. Farewell beautiful game.”
Afterwards, he told Bayern’s website that he didn’t want to wait until his legs had gone and he was struggling to match the performance consistency he’s shown throughout his career.
“It wasn’t an easy decision to make, but I believe it’s the right time,” he said. “I always thought it would be better to quit sooner rather than later. I still feel good, but I believe this is the right moment.
“I wanted to end my career still at the highest level, and Bayern is the highest level. I’m incredibly proud and happy to play for FC Bayern and to be a part of this family.”
The Bundesliga club’s chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge was quick to shower praise on the Spaniard, who has been with the club since August 2014.
“Bayern would like to thank a great player and a man who has played the Bayern way on and off the pitch excellently,” he said.
“Xabi Alonso is one of the greats of world football. He has won everything in his career. He is also an outstanding personality, a gentleman of football.”