Bayern Munich midfielder Xabi Alonso has revealed that he came close to joining Barcelona when he was at Liverpool.
Alonso joined Real Madrid in 2009 after spending five years with Liverpool, but the Spaniard has claimed that he almost moved to Camp Nou after "a conversation between Rafael Benitez and Pep Guardiola".
"It was the summer that Liverpool wanted to sell me, and there was a conversation between Rafa [Benitez] and Pep [Guardiola]," Alonso told El Pais.
"Pep told me about it in Germany. He told Rafa that he liked me a lot and I would fit very well with his way of playing, but Busquets had started in the first team and had tremendous potential. So Pep opted for him, and he was not mistaken. He turned into a great player for them.
"It was not that I was uncomfortable at Madrid, but I had been there five years and after winning La Decima I wanted to try something else."
Alonso, 35, has scored nine times in 111 appearances for Bayern since joining the German champions.