Xabi Alonso reacts to ‘unbelievable’ historic season as Leverkusen make history in DFB-Pokal final win

Posted by

Bayer Leverkusen may have seen an invincible season and hopes of a treble snatched away by Atalanta on Wednesday, but they quickly recovered to lift the DFB-Pokal, making more history along the way.

Die Werkself looked tired and lethargic as they went down 3-0 to their Italian counterparts in Dublin during the week and there’s no doubt the defeat was hard to take for players, staff and supporters alike.

However, there was no time for sulking. Instead, Leverkusen saw off a brave and defiant effort from 2. Bundesliga side Kaiserslautern in Saturday’s DFB-Pokal final in Berlin, winning 1-0 thanks to a Granit Xhaka wondergoal despite playing the entire second half a man down following Odilon Kossounou’s 44th-minute red card.

Having already become the first-ever team to complete an unbeaten Bundesliga season to lift the title and end Bayern Munich’s 11-year reign of terror, Leverkusen are now the first-ever team to go an entire German domestic season without defeat.

It’s an incredible achievement for a club that, prior to this season, had only ever won one DFB-Pokal and one UEFA Cup. In fact, the Rhineland side had attracted the nickname ‘Neverkusen’ thanks to their 10 runner-up medals in the Bundesliga, DFB-Pokal, Champions League and DFL-Supercup prior to this season.

Alonso reacts to ‘unbelievable’ Leverkusen season

Leverkusen’s final win over Kaiserslautern sparked incredible scenes of celebration at the final whistle, with all associated with the club unlikely to forget their remarkable season in a hurry.

Completing the German double will only serve to enhance the already burgeoning reputation of manager Xabi Alonso, who has reportedly been courted by the likes of Liverpool, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich in recent months.

The Spaniard was only in the mood to enjoy his side’s success on Saturday, however, having already confirmed he will remain at Leverkusen next season as they return to the Champions League.

“The full journey and season was wonderful. What we have done this season is unbelievable. To play these games with energy and belief. I am very very proud of the team. We will always remember this in the future,” Alonso told reporters (via Get German Football news).

The former midfielder added: “Our target in July was to have a good season. We had clear targets but after three/four games I was optimistic. Maybe not as big as what’s happened here. To play 53 games and only have one defeat. It is unbelievable.”

More Stories Xabi Alonso