Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard sends heartfelt message to retiring Xabi Alonso

It was the flawless message to those who were fortunate enough to see the silky Spaniard in his prime.

The pair played at Anfield together for five years between 2004-09 before Alonso moved to Real Madrid for £30 million.

The former Spain global will call time on a career which has seen him lift one Liga, three Bundesliga and two Champions League titles, with his first European Cup coming alongside Gerrard in 2005.

“I’m very jealous of you having a World Cup winner’s medal, I’m very jealous of you having league titles in Germany and Spain, but you deserve it mate”.

A few months later and Alonso would be sold to Real Madrid for £30m, being left to rue a missed opportunity to help Liverpool back to the top of the pile in English football.

Ahead of his football farewell, Alonso spoke to Matt Dickinson in The Times, revealing his three regrets after a career full of trophies.

Alonso will take to the pitch for the final time on Saturday when Bayern Munich play their last game of their title-winning Bundesliga season at home to Freiburg. The answer provided by most Liverpool fans when questioned on the club’s greatest midfield pairing of the last 20 years.

“I want to be remembered as a pure football player”, Alonso told Marca.

“But maybe that would be too much to ask, too ideal”.

When I look back, I can be happy that I’ve done what I wanted, dictated my path“.

The 114-time Spanish global is widely regarded as one of the best midfielders of his generation and a real credit to the sport. Even now he is producing game after game, and no doubt he could play on for another three years.