Gerrard's heartfelt message to former Liverpool teammate

Al Ettifaq head coach Steven Gerrard delivered a message of congratulations for his former Liverpool teammate Xabi Alonso upon leading Bayer Leverkusen to the Bundesliga title for the first time in their history.

The pair formed a world-class midfield pairing at Anfield for five years from 2004, leading Liverpool to four titles, including the 2004-05 UEFA Champions League in Istanbul, as well as the FA Cup, UEFA Super Cup and the Community Shield.

“I just wanted to take this moment to acknowledge your huge achievement over in Germany,” Gerrard said in a message through the official RSL Instagram account.

“Congratulations on winning the league, especially after so long and to do it for the first time. Incredible achievement - I’m so pleased and proud of everything that you’ve done.

“On behalf of everyone at Ettifaq and everyone in Saudi, I want to say huge congratulations. Enjoy the celebrations and we’ll catch up soon.”

Since retiring, Gerrard’s managerial career took him to Scotland, where he won the Scottish Premiership title with Rangers in the 2020-21 season. He then spent a spell at Aston Villa before making the move to the Roshn Saudi League last summer. The former Liverpool captain has been in charge of Al Ettifaq since the start of the 2023-24 campaign.

Meanwhile, after retiring in 2017 at Bayern Munich, Alonso returned to his native Spain, spending three years in charge of the B team at Real Sociedad before taking the helm at Bayer Leverkusen in October 2022. On Sunday, he led the club to a first league title in their 120-year history, winning the 2023-24 Bundesliga with five matches to spare.