Michael Owen is confident Liverpool hero Xabi Alonso will be contemplating replacing Jurgen Klopp following his shock decision to quit at the end of the season.
The 56-year-old has informed the club’s ownership of his decision to stand down, having taken charge at Liverpool in 2015.
Klopp has won six major trophies with the Reds, including the Premier League title in 2020 and the Champions League trophy the year before.
Follow our live blog for latest news on Jurgen Klopp and Liverpool
While Klopp will remain in the Anfield hotseat until the end of the current campaign, talk has already turned to who will replace him.
Alonso enjoyed a distinguished playing career on Merseyside before he left to join Real Madrid and has enjoyed a fantastic start to his managerial career at Bayer Leverkusen.
Contemplating the Spaniard’s potential next move, former Liverpool striker Michael Owen told Boyle Sports: ‘There’ll be loads of options available to Alonso in the future, and I would have thought that he would probably have his eyes set on the teams that he played for – like Real Madrid or Liverpool – when the opportunity comes up.
‘I’d have thought Alonso’s more realistic aim would be one of these clubs, but his thoughts could be subconscious. He’ll be fully engrained in what he’s doing now, though, and he has to make his name first.
‘He’s doing a great job. When the time comes in the future, then the likes of Liverpool and Real Madrid may be more tempting for him.’
Those sentiments were echoed by another former Anfield favourite, John Barnes, who has been impressed at the way in which Alonso has taken to management.
‘I am not at all surprised at how well Xabi Alonso has developed because he is an intelligent person. He understands football, he understands the players. He’s modern, he understands the systems,’ Barnes told Betting Expert.
‘He has a great story in terms of the places he has played and the family he comes from. He played in a football family for a long time, so it doesn’t surprise me at all.
‘What he’s doing now doesn’t surprise me at all and I’m sure he can continue to do so. I don’t want to say that Leverkusen will win the Bundesliga, but when it comes to maximizing the team’s potential, I don’t think anyone could have done a better job.
‘There have been many players who have played under top managers but were not good managers. So you really have to have it within yourself to understand what you want.
‘Xabi Alonso has played under good managers, but he is his own man and he knows how he wants his team to play and they are playing attractive and successful football at the moment.’