Michael Ballack: I got to know Philipp Lahm's 'other face'

Erica Murray
May 28, 2017

May 20, 2017 will be the last time fans across the world will get to see the duo perform their Classic Act for one last time as Bayern Munich captain Philipp Lahm prepares for his final good bye to "the attractive game".

Pep Guardiola, who managed the midfielder at Bayern Munich, also paid tribute, predicting Alonso would soon move into coaching.

"I am lucky to have been blessed by so many nice moments not just with the team but with the staff and the fans too".

Aged 33, one can question if Lahm still has it in him to play a couple of years more, but he has earned this retirement. We all enjoyed the process together.

Xabi Alonso Finished the career and he started...

"As I said, I couldn't ask for a better midfield partner and when you left, it broke my heart", Gerrard added in the video message.

Philipp Lahm debut

In contrast to some signings at the Bernabeu, Alonso had little interest in "galactico" status.

'I didn't know that a player who takes on the role of captain doesn't have to give it back afterwards.

"I believe the most important thing has been the game and not all that surrounds it with the media noise, I have always aimed to play pure football. I'm one for strategy, not the spectacular".

Xabi Alonso bows out having accomplished it all; league titles in two countries, domestic cups in three, two Champions League medals, two European Championships and a World Cup.

A 1-0 defeat against star-studded Spain in the Euro 2008 was the first of a few near misses that Lahm was about to encounter in next few years of his career. I'm looking forward to the time after but today it's certain that it's my last time with such a collective. I have no doubt that to the last match of the championship, Bayern will be able to tune to victory and with a demonstrative performance before his native stands will win. A FIFA World Cup, a UEFA Champions League title and 8 Bundesliga titles among several other team and individual honours is no mean feat. He was, however, cheered from the park when substituted Bayern's quarter-final exit to Real earlier this season. I can not wait for the game - the last moments with the team, training staff and club employees.

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