Alonso denies he is set to retire from Spain, yet to decide future
JUN 23, 2014 6:21a ET
Xabi Alonso has denied speculation he is set to retire from international football, revealing he is still to decide on his future with Spain.
The Real Madrid midfielder grabbed the headlines after Spain's 2-0 defeat to Chile - which saw the world champions eliminated from the World Cup after just two games - by declaring that the team lacked "hunger" and "ambition".
Reports later emerged that the 32-year-old was to call time on an illustrious 11-year international career with Spain, in which he has won two European Championships and one World Cup, but Alonso insisted he had not made any decision.
He told Spanish radio station Onda Cero: "I'm still not at that moment, I want all this to end as soon as possible, go on holiday, disconnect a little and then decide things with time. Right now is not the time."
The midfielder refused to be drawn on suggestions that his team-mates were irked by his comments that the team lacked hunger, and insisted the atmosphere among the squad in Brazil was similar to during the glorious Euro 2012 campaign.
"I'm not going to say what's happening in the dressing room, for me that should stay there," he said. "The atmosphere and feeling in the dressing room is the same as it was two years ago. It's all very natural, there isn't the tension that you (the media) imagine there is."
Alonso also appeared to backtrack on his earlier scathing comments about the team's attitude during the World Cup.
"We know that we lacked intensity, but our enthusiasm has been the same as always," he said. "The hardest thing was (to repeat) what we have already done, which is to win three competitions in four years."