Thursday August 31 2017
Alonso: Really like Napoli, Juve…

Xabi Alonso says he “really likes” Napoli’s style of play and reveals he was “really close” to joining Juventus.

Napoli are widely regarded as the best, ball-playing team in Italy, while Juve reportedly courted Alonso in the summer of 2008, before the former midfielder ended up leaving Liverpool for Real Madrid a year later.

“I really like this Napoli. I like Sarri’s philosophy and the desire of his team to always have the ball at their feet,” he told Sky Sport Italia.

“Napoli are attacking and fearless. They have a visible mentality on the pitch and I appreciate it. I also have many friends there: Pepe Reina, Callejon and Albiol.

“I often hear from them and I like to watch them play in [Napoli’s] system. As well as in Italy, they can be a surprise package in Europe.

“Juve? They’re a team among the favourites [for the Champions League]. They played two Champions League Finals in three years and it’s no coincidence.

“They’re very close to the top, and sooner or later they’ll end up winning it. I know how much the players want it, but there’s so much competition.

“I was really close to Juve. I’d have liked to play in Italy but there was no agreement between Liverpool and Juve.”

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