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Bundesliga 2023-24: As fans celebrate, Leverkusen’s Alonso cools down ahead of crucial week

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Bundesliga 2023-24: As fans celebrate, Leverkusen’s Alonso cools down ahead of crucial week

Berlin (Germany), Feb 5 (IANS) As Bayer Leverkusen fans eagerly prepare for what could be the club’s most successful season yet, Xabi Alonso is working diligently to maintain a sense of calm.

Ahead of what is expected to be a crucial week, starting with the German Cup round of 16 against VfB Stuttgart on Tuesday evening, followed by a head-to-head clash against league runners-up Bayern Munich, this Saturday, the Spanish star coach appears. to be fighting an uphill battle.

With the possibility of winning three league titles, the German Cup and the Euroleague still alive, the enthusiasm knows no bounds. “We’re doing our job and we’ll see what happens,” the 42-year-old claimed after Darmstadt coach Thorsten Lieberknecht commented after Leverkusen’s win last weekend, saying: “We probably lost with the new German champion. They deserve. this.”

One of the most debated questions in sports is who really deserves a title. Whether they’re Leverkusen supporters or not, most fans could side with Lieberknecht and cross their fingers for Alonso’s team, reports Xinhua.

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It currently appears to be a challenge for the Spaniard to temper expectations on the 1993 German Cup winner ahead of this week’s crucial games, especially after midfielder Florian Wirtz secured his first title of the season.

The 20-year-old recently became the youngest winner of the “Goal of the Year” award, a competition organized by sports broadcaster “Sportschau” where fans vote for their favorite goal. Wirtz fueled the fans’ excitement by saying, “I’m an ambitious player and I want to win everything I compete in. We’re trying to win everything this season.”

Wirtz has been the driving force behind Leverkusen becoming a powerhouse this season, and is proud to be mentioned alongside former ‘goal of the year’ winners such as German icons Gunter Netzer and Lothar Matthaeus.

As the Leverkusen manager comments on “intense days ahead”, former Arsenal midfielder Granit Xhaka reflects on “the week that will decide a lot”.

Alonso and sporting director Simon Rolfes tirelessly stress the need to focus on the upcoming Cup clash against current top-flight side Stuttgart. Rolfes labeled the clash against coach Sebastian Hoeness’s side “the most important game of the season”, acknowledging the substantial boost a win would provide.

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The collective effort of the entire team seems crucial to temporarily put aside thoughts of the upcoming clash with Bayern next weekend. The league meeting in Stuttgart, where Bayern narrowly escaped defeat, could offer an insight. “We did well when we focused on the next game without looking ahead. In reality, the next one is against Stuttgart,” emphasized Rolfes.

Alonso acknowledges the enthusiasm of the fans but adds: “So far, we have achieved nothing despite our satisfactory performances. To win titles we need patience and determination to finish what we have started.”

— IANS

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