Jose Mourinho is still 'special', says Xabi Alonso
Xabi Alonso insists Real Madrid manager Jose Mourinho is still "special".
The ex-Chelsea boss is under pressure this season with Real third in La Liga, 16 points behind leaders Barcelona.
There have also been rumours of unrest at the Spanish giants as they prepare to face Manchester United in the last 16 of the Champions League.
But former Liverpool midfielder Alonso told Football Focus that the Real players still "believe" in Mourinho and want to "fight for him on the pitch".
By emulating his 2004 achievement with Porto, he became the third manager ever to win the Champions League with two different teams.
Asked if the 50-year-old Portuguese manager still possessed his talent, Alonso said: "Yes, absolutely.
"You see that Jose has something different.
"The way that he communicates with the players, it's different. The way he empathises with the players as well is different.
"That is why you want to be behind him, why you want to play and fight for him on the pitch. The players, we do believe in him."
Alonso will be part of the Real squad that takes on Manchester United next week, when the teams meet in the first leg at the Bernabeu on Wednesday.