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Bayer Leverkusen head coach Xabi Alonso is not thinking about the possibility of becoming the next Liverpool manager, insisting he is in the “right place” in Germany.

The former Reds midfielder is one of the early frontrunners to replace Jurgen Klopp at Anfield after the German’s bombshell announcement on Friday that he will be leaving the club at the end of the season.

Alonso, who enjoyed great success with Liverpool as a player and said “once a Red, always a Red”, is earning himself a reputation as one of the top coaches in Europe after guiding Leverkusen to a four-point lead at the top of the Bundesliga.

Alonso played over 200 games for Liverpool between 2004 and 2009
Alonso played over 200 games for Liverpool between 2004 and 2009 (Tim Markland/PA)

However, the Spaniard is not thinking about his future amid immediate speculation linking him to the job.

“Speculation is normal. My focus is here in Leverkusen,” he told a press conference ahead of his side’s Bundesliga match with Borussia Monchengladbach.

“First of all, it was a huge surprise. I have huge respect for Jurgen, huge admiration for what he has achieved and the way he has achieved it.

“At the moment I’m really happy here. I’m enjoying my work here, I’m feeling that each day is a challenge, each game is a challenge.

“We are in an intense and beautiful journey here in Leverkusen and I’m trying to give my best to help my players be ready for the next thing and that is my goal.

“What is coming next, I don’t know. I’m not in that moment to think about the next step. I’m thinking about right now and I think I’m in a great place and I’m enjoying it.

“I think it is the right place and that is all I can say. What is going to happen in the future I don’t know and I don’t really care, to be honest.”

Alonso played over 200 times for the Reds between 2004 and 2009, winning the Champions League and the FA Cup before joining Real Madrid.