Xabi Alonso celebrates his first major win in Leverkusen coaching

Xabi Alonso celebrates his first major win in Leverkusen coaching

BERLIN (AP) — Xabi Alonso led Bayer Leverkusen to its second Bundesliga win of the season with a 4-0 win over visiting Schalke in his top-flight debut on Saturday.

Moussa Diaby scored a goal and set up two more for Leverkusen to climb out of the relegation zone with their first league win since the end of August.

Alonso – the former midfield maestro who won top honors with Spain, Liverpool, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich – was appointed on Wednesday when Leverkusen sacked Gerardo Sion, who last night was in charge of Porto in the Champions League. Oversaw a 2-0 defeat.

Presented on Thursday, Alonso said, ” We take a step forward Here today, to make an impact, to work and to show that we can do better.

Leverkusen’s players were clearly eager to impress their new coach on Saturday. And he was very busy on the sidelines, using the early drinks breaks to quickly instruct individual players.

But Alonso had to wait until the 38th minute of a hard-fought first half before Diabe broke the deadlock with a volley from distance. It was the French forward’s first league goal of the season.

Alonso celebrated briefly with his bench before instructing midfielder Charles Aranguez.

Less than three minutes later, Callum Hudson-Odoi made a fine solo run past two Schalke midfielders before feeding Diabe, who slotted in Jeremy Frimpong. The Dutch right winger fired inside the far post from a narrow angle.

Frimpong got his second goal in the 53rd, then set up by Diaby, who waited for the right moment before playing his pass. The goal was stopped as Robert Andrich helped the ball with his hand.

Alonso replaced favorite Paulinho in the 88th minute and the Brazilian forward sealed the win two minutes later with a fourth goal.

Bochum won their first game of the season 3-0 at home against Eintracht Frankfurt, Mainz drew 1-1 with Leipzig and Wolfsburg drew 1-1 with Augsburg.

Bayern Munich visit Borussia Dortmund for a late ‘Klassiker’.

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