Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti is seeking an early Chirstmas present after asking Xabi Alonso to commit his future to the Spanish giant
Alonso's contract with Madrid expires at the end of the season and in less than one month he will be free to negotiate with other clubs - with Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho hoping to be reunited with the midfielder next season.
The former Liverpool midfielder missed the first ten La Liga games of the season due to an injury and Real Madrid were beaten in two games without him. Since returning the Spaniard has played the last five games leading his team to five consecutives victories.
"I can say that Xabi Alonso is the key of our improves. He is a very important player, he has an impressive quality and experience. His return has been very good for the squad. I would like that he extend his contract as my Christmas present, " Ancelotti told Spanish radio station esRadio.
Real Madrid has already contacted Alonso to sign a new deal and Spanish sources claim that they are willing to offer him £5.4 m a year for the next two seasons.
"I think everyone in the club knows that he is important. The club are already talking to him to extend his contract, I hope he is happy here and renew soon.
"I see myself in Alonso. He is slow like me but I think he has more quality," he added.
However, Alonso has insisted that he will not make a decision until after the New Year and if he does decide to leave then Manchester City, Manchester United and Chelse may all be vying to gain his signature.