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Xabi Alonso influence clear on La Liga surprise packages

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Real Sociedad B, who are managed by Liverpool legend Xabi Alonso, continued their tough start to the Segunda Division this weekend, as they were beaten 2-0 by Huesca on Friday.

Alonso’s team have endured a challenging spell since their win in Week 1 of the campaign and are now down in 20th position after six matches without a win.

However, the Real Sociedad first team leapt up to second place in La Liga on Sunday with a win over Elche and Alonso’s influence is seemingly being felt in the senior side.

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With a number of key players absent, manager Imanol Alguacil has had to dip into the B team to beef up his first-team squad and a number of players who have worked with Alonso are now thriving at senior level.

As noted by Ruairidh Barlow, only three players in Sociedad’s starting lineup on Sunday hadn’t come through the youth setup at the Basque club.

While the way in which the team is playing is tribute to the strong academy structure Sociedad have, Alonso can also take some of the credit for the way in which a number of players have developed under his guidance.

The 39-year-old was appointed as Real Sociedad B manager in 2019 and last season he steered the team to promotion to the second tier in Spain. It was the first time they’ve reached that level for 60 years.

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At the moment, the B team is clearly finding it difficult at that level and they will face a big fight to stay up this season.

However, the shrewd work being done by the club at youth level and B-team level is clearly having a big impact on a thriving senior side.

Alonso joined Liverpool from Sociedad in 2004 and enjoyed five memorable years at Anfield. The playmaker won the Champions League and the FA Cup with the Reds, showcasing incredible technical skill and passing range on a consistent basis.

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