‘Hunger and desire to keep going’ – Xabi Alonso ready for Europa League clash

It’s been quite the few days for Bayer Leverkusen. On Sunday, they clinched their first ever Bundesliga title in the club’s history, ending Bayern Munich’s 11-year monopoly and now, the club are on the verge of reaching a Europa League semi-final in consecutive seasons.

With a DFB Pokal final also on the cards, there’s a potential treble-winning season for Bayer 04 on the line. But even after post-match celebrations which went long into the night and having Monday off, Xabi Alonso fired a warning to West Ham that his players are ready for a difficult task ahead.

Speaking to reporters at Wednesday’s press conference, Alonso said: “The team have given me no reasons to doubt their commitment. I feel the hunger and the desire of the players to keep going. For sure we are going to be ready. I have all the confidence that we will play here to go through.”

Bayer Leverkusen left it late against Qarabag

Heading into stoppage time against Qarabag FK in the Round 0f 16, Bayer were heading out of the competition. But a brace from Patrik Schick secured a place in the Europa League quarter-finals. Drawn against West Ham, Bayer hold a 2-0 lead over the Premier League side, but while confident, Alonso knows it will remain a difficult task.

“We are expecting a tough game. West ham have the experience of turning a tie around like after the Freiburg game, they got the result. Hopefully we will play our football, we are not here to just defend ourselves,” added Alonso.

GGFN | Daniel Pinder


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