In the world of football, managerial changes can often spark heated debates. Recently, Richard Keys' suggestion of former Liverpool player Xabi Alonso as the next Manchester United manager has stirred up a storm among his beIN Sports panellists.
Alonso, who has been making waves this season with Bayer Leverkusen, was proposed by Keys as a potential candidate to take over the reins at Manchester United.
The ex-Spain midfielder has successfully lifted the German side out of relegation trouble and towards European qualification last season. His impressive 13-game unbeaten start this season sees his team sitting comfortably at the top of Bundesliga table.
On the other hand, Manchester United seems to have hit a rough patch under Erik ten Hag's second season at helm. Their recent defeat against Newcastle on Saturday night left Ten Hag under increasing pressure.
Currently placed seventh in Premier League table and struggling in what seemed like an achievable Champions League group stage, it is clear that they are facing significant challenges.
This contrast prompted Keys to advocate for Alonso as a potential solution for Manchester United’s current woes.
Richard Keys, beIN Sports panellist, said:
"United are no longer in the position where if top players become available they're going to sign for United - they're just not, They can't go out and do what they once did which is sign everyone else's best player just because it weakened the opposition and they could maybe put them in amongst a squad of 22 for a while and hope perhaps they had something to contribute.
"In my view, Manchester United should go now to Leverkusen and should say to Xabi Alonso: 'we want you to come to Old Trafford, we will give you Saudi league money, and we will guarantee you five years' - which Fergie had when he first went to Manchester United. Whatever else happens, you've got five years to sort this out for us”.
Former Liverpool player believes Manchester United are no match for Xabi Alonso
However, not everyone agreed with Key’s proposition. Pundit and former Liverpool player Jason McAteer dismissed Key’s argument outrightly by stating "no chance" and insisted "he won't go there".
When asked why he held such views about Alonso taking up the job at Old Trafford, McAteer explained that he believed Alonso would aspire for roles in clubs like Real Madrid or Liverpool instead.
Jason McAteer, beIN Sports pundit and former Liverpool player, said:
"I think he'd have aspirations of Real Madrid, Liverpool, I think Manchester United right now is not a job for him."
The debate over whether or not Alonso is the right fit for Manchester United came on a weekend where his Leverkusen side dropped points in the league for just the second time this season, drawing 1-1 at home to Borussia Dortmund.
Despite this minor setback, they remain top of the Bundesliga after rivals Bayern Munich saw their meeting with Union Berlin postponed due to heavy snowfall in Bavaria.
While Richard Keys' suggestion of Xabi Alonso as Manchester United's next manager has sparked controversy among football pundits, it remains to be seen what direction the club will take.