Former Liverpool midfielder Xabi Alonso announces retirement from football

The 35-year-old a World Cup and twice European Championships winner with Spain, announced the move on Twitter on Thursday

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Xabi Alonso has announced his retirement from the game.

The 35-year-old former Liverpool midfielder, a World Cup and twice European Championships winner with Spain, had been rumoured to be considering his future for the last few months.

And on Thursday he confirmed the news with a short message on Twitter.

“Lived it. Loved it. Farewell beautiful game,” he wrote.

Alonso is believed to have met with Bayern’s management towards the end of 2016 to confirm he planned to retire at the end of the current campaign, despite still being a regular in Carlo Ancelotti’s side, starting 17 of their 23 Bundesliga games so far.

He is a fan favourite at the Allianz Arena, having won two Bundesliga titles, the German Cup and the German Super Cup.

The Spaniard made his name at Liverpool after arriving from Real Sociedad and won the Champions League, Uefa Super Cup and the FA Cup as part of a formidable midfield partnership with Steven Gerrard.

Alonso is also fondly remembered in the Spanish capital, where he left Liverpool for in a £30m move and won the La Liga title, the Copa del Rey twice, the Supercopa and helped Real Madrid to La Decima, their 10th Champions League trophy.