NEWS
Monday February 11 2013
Alonso denies doping, lauds Cristiano

Real Madrid’s Xabi Alonso has looked ahead to facing Manchester United and also asserted that there was no doping during his time at Real Sociedad.

Alonso came through La Real’s youth ranks and was a member of the first team from 1999 to 2004, overlapping by two years the period that former President Inaki Badiola alleged last week was when the club were involved in purchasing prohibited medical supplies normally used for doping.

“During my time playing for Real Sociedad, I never saw or knew of anyone who was involved in using these kind of substances,” responded Alonso to The Times this week, when asked on the matter.

“Real Sociedad has always been an impeccable club and it will continue the same way.”

Alonso was speaking to the British media ahead of Madrid facing Manchester United in the Last 16 of the Champions League this Wednesday evening.

For the midfielder, who returned to full training today, the focus will rightly by on former Red Devil Cristiano Ronaldo.

“Probably the thing that people don’t realise is how professional Ronaldo is. He looks after himself so well, trains hard every day and wants to be the best that he can.

“That is how competitive he is. Maybe he gets some of that from [Sir Alex] Ferguson also, but wherever it comes from, the statistics show that he is up there with [Lionel] Messi as [one of] the best players in the world.

“He will love going back to Old Trafford. You only have to think of how much he was adored there to realise the kind of reception that will be waiting for him. As soon as we knew what the draw was, he was really excited about it.”

Football Italia website