Place of Birth: Tolosa, Basque Country
Current Club: Real Madrid
Xabi Alonso is a World Cup winner who has also won almost everything else in his footballing career. Pairing Alonso with Javi Martinez would give the Basque national team one of the best double pivots in the world and would make scoring goals nearly impossible for opponents.
Yet, it is not certain that Alonso would elect to play for the Basques. He was recently left off the squad list for last friendly against Peru, presumably because he has never been that outspoken about supporting the Basque Country.
Regardless, having the experience and leadership of Alonso in the squad would be massive for a team that would be relatively untested on all fronts.
Alonso’s passing and ability to dictate play would fit in perfectly with the Basque footballing style, and he would likely be able to go forward more than usual with Martinez covering the defensive duties.
If Alonso was to snub the Basque National Team, Iturraspe could fill in for him, as could Real Madrid teammate Asier Illarramendi, who is already seen as the 32-year-old’s eventual replacement.