Clubs: Real Sociedad de Fútbol, SD Eibar (loan), Liverpool FC, Real madrid CF
• The son of Spanish international midfielder Periko Alonso, a member of the Real Sociedad de Fútbol side that won back-to-back titles in 1981 and 1982, Xabi had a loan spell in the second division with SD Eibar before making his mark in the top flight.
• Came to the fore in 2002/03 when Sociedad ran Madrid close for the title; provided countless assists for the prolific strike duo of Nihat Kahveci and Darko Kovačević and was rewarded with his first Spain cap.
• Joined Liverpool FC in 2004 and won the UEFA Champions League final in Istanbul at the end of his first season, equalising against AC Milan to make it 3-3 before the Reds won on penalties; an FA Cup winner in 2006, he was a UEFA Champions League finalist again in 2007.
• Appeared for Spain at UEFA EURO 2004 and was first choice at the 2006 FIFA World Cup, where he scored his first international goal in a 4-0 defeat of Ukraine; made four appearances at UEFA EURO 2008 as Spain became European champions, before featuring prominently under Del Bosque in 2010 World Cup qualifying and the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup.
• Ended a five-year stay at Anfield with a big-money move to Madrid ahead of the 2009/10 season and won the first league championship medal of his career in 2011/12.
• An ever-present as Spain retained their European title in Poland and Ukraine, beating Italy 4-0 in the final of UEFA EURO 2012; named in the Team of the Tournament.
UEFA European Championship: winner 2008, 2012
UEFA EURO 2012: Team of the Tournament
UEFA Champions League: winner 2005, runner-up 2007
UEFA Super Cup: winner 2005
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