Real Madrid and Spanish midfielder Xabi Alonso, has provoked an angry response from his teammates about comments he made to the media after the defending World Champions where sent crashing out of the World Cup as reported by the Marca.
Alonso, a veteran of 112 appearances for his country, and double European Cup and World Cup winner with his country, claimed that it is an end of an era for the Spanish side and that their lacklustre performances were down the the lack of hunger, ambition and preparation.
"It's a completely unexpected failure," admitted a dejected Alonso.
"We haven't been able to maintain the same levels of conviction, of hunger. The success, the happiness of before is gone, it's run out and we haven't been able to keep it going."
“We've made lots of mistakes, we've lost a bit of our know-how, and we've paid for it with our solidity that had helped us win so many games."
“Things are going to change. Eras end with defeats... and this was a painful defeat.”
Spain were stunned 5-1 by an dominant Netherlands in their opening clash in Brazil, a result that clearly dented the confidence and pride of the defending champions.
They needed a result against Chile on Wednesday night to stay alive however a fired up performance by Alexi Sanchez and co. sealed their fate, to leave a nation weeping and the football world stunned.
The fans perspective
Comments met with an angry reaction
Alonso's comments initially caught his teammates by surprise which later turned to anger, as they clearly were not a reflection on the rest of the squad, and the fact that he by no means made it clear they reflected his own view has provoked an angry response.
The rest of the squad have made it clear that they categorically deny those were the reasons for their sudden exit from the tournament, and while they remain fully accountable for their own performances individually and collectively, Alonso's comments do not reflect those of the squad.
Costa and Iniesta respond
Diego Costa and Iniesta have been the first players to respond to Alonso's claims with the midfielder saying: "I don't agree with his comments. Everybody here was focused on winning. I'm here because I wanted to win, I wanted to reach the final and do a good job, but it wasn't to be. We obviously lacked something, but in terms of quality we're superior to many other teams."
This will almost certainly not be the last of the reaction and the timing and insensativity of his comments could very well spell the end of an illustrious international career for Alonso.