Steven Gerrard has criticised former Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez for the decision to sell Xabi Alonso to Real Madrid in 2009, according to the Daily Mirror.
The Spaniard had been an integral part of the Reds’ squad for five years before he completed his £30m move to the Bernabeu, and Gerrard has explained in his autobiography, My Story, that he could not understand why the classy midfielder was allowed to leave (via Mirror).
“It was clear Alonso was royalty after our first training session together in August 2004, and Rafa Benitez, who had been so clever to buy him in the first place, was equally stupid to sell him to Real Madrid five years later,” he stated.
The 33-year-old was an important part of the side that would win the Champions League in 2005 – with Alonso scoring the equaliser to complete the comeback after being 3-0 down at half-time to AC Milan – and the FA Cup one year later.
Since Alonso’s departure, he has enjoyed another Champions League victory, won the Copa Del Rey twice, and lifted the league title with both Los Blancos and current club Bayern Munich.
Meanwhile, the Anfield outfit have just a League Cup victory to speak of since the cultured playmaker’s departure.