“For me it’s clear” – Xabi Alonso names Liverpool as favorites to lift the Europa League trophy

“For me it’s clear” – Xabi Alonso names Liverpool as favorites to lift the Europa League trophy

Bayer Leverkusen manager Xabi Alonso has named former club Liverpool as the favorites to win the UEFA Europa League (UEL) trophy this season.

Speaking ahead of the quarter-finals draw for all three of UEFA’s competitions, Alonso sided with his former club and believed they would emerge winners.

Xabi Alonso candid about Liverpool’s UEL chances

As per journalist Fabrizio Romano, Alonso was clear in his views about Liverpool being favorites.

“For me it’s clear, I really see Liverpool as the favourites to win the Europa League.”

The Reds made it out of the group stages in style earlier this season. They topped Group E with 12 points and qualified as winners ahead of Ligue 1 outfit Toulouse. This meant they skipped the elimination round and made it straight to the round of 16.

Jurgen Klopp’s men dismantled Sparta Prague over two legs in the round of 16. They won the away leg 5-1, before completing the demolition job with a 6-1 win at Anfield. Their 11-2 aggregate margin was the biggest victory margin among any of the ties in this year’s tournament.

Darwin Nunez (four goals), Mohamed Salah (four goals) and Cody Gakpo (four goals) have led the Reds in the Europa League so far this season. With such quality in their ranks, Liverpool will look to win the tournament. They will face Serie A side Atalanta in the quarters.

Bayer Leverkusen this season

Much like Liverpool, Xabi Alonso’s Bayer Leverkusen are also leading their domestic league. However, the margin is much larger than the Reds’ as Leverkusen lead Bayern Munich by 10 points after 25 games.

Xabi Alonso, Bayer Leverkusen.
Bayer Leverkusen players celebrating their goal against Qarabag. (Getty Images)

They have won 21 and drawn four games, scoring 63 goals and conceding just 16 as they continue their unbeaten season so far. While Alonso gave his former side their flowers, his own team were the only side to finish the group stages with six wins from as many games. Leverkusen topped Group H ahead of Qarabag.

As fate would have it, the two met again in the round of 16 and played an enthralling two-legged tie. Leverkusen won 5-4 on aggregate to progress to the quarter-finals, where they will face West Ham United.

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