Naby Keita says the toughest opponent he has come up against in his career is Liverpool legend Xabi Alonso.
The pair came head-to-head twice during their time in the Bundesliga when Alonso was pulling the strings for Bayern Munich, with a young Keita starring for RB Leipzig.
LiverpoolFC.com hosted a Q&A with Keita and the 23-year-old was asked who the hardest player he had come up against was.
He replied: “When I used to play against Bayern, Xabi Alonso always used to give me a really hard time.
“He was so experienced… he made me suffer.
“The way he’d keep switching play just meant that you could never stop running.
“He was very intelligent.”
Alonso, who retired from playing last year, is also a big fan of Keita.
He called the midfielder a ‘big personality’ and an ‘all-round midfielder’ after he clinched a move to Anfield in July.
The 23-year-old has enjoyed an excellent start to the campaign, helping the Reds win their first four games of the season.
Former Real Madrid man Alonso made 210 first-team appearances for Liverpool between 2004 and 2009, winning one Champions League, one FA Cup, a UEFA Super Cup and an FA Community Shield.