Speculation on his exit was adamant late in the Premiership season, especially following some suspect performances when he was included in the B side, but it looks as if Alonso will be around through his prime years and I for one am as happy as fat kid who just got adopted by Ronald McDonald. I admit even I thought he was leaving, I mean, someone of his talent and ability should be a starter and the fact that he is sticking around means he believes in what Rafa has in store for him and our team.
One of my favorite recent Xabi moments was in this year's Champions League Final when shortly after Kaka did a little spin move to dribble through two defenders (subsequently having Masche take the ball from him though), Alonso did a very similar, yet smoother move, just to show the world that either he's just as good as Kaka or the Brazilian is overrated. I'd have to say though, Kaka is definitely overrated, but Xabi is of a different style and an overall, more complete player (in other words, he knows how to play defense as well as make spectacular passes and score great goals).
Here are some of Xabi's great moments:
The 65-yarder against Luton Town
Similar goal versus Newcastle
The Arsenal Goal (Finnan to Kewell to Gerrard to a charging Xabi)
And here's his Players Who Shook The Kop video, where he was #33.