Rosberg wanted Alonso to replace him at Mercedes

Nico Rosberg says he would have preferred to see the “fireworks” produced by Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso becoming team-mates at Mercedes after Valtteri Bottas replaced Formula One’s world champion at the Silver Arrows.

Rosberg followed in his father Keke’s footsteps last year in ruling motorsport’s premier class, pipping Hamilton to the title after two seasons spent bested by the Briton, before announcing a surprise retirement.

Bottas was drafted in from Williams to fill the seat, although the Finn is yet to win an F1 race in his career and has not been guaranteed a long-term future at the team.

Widely regarded as one of the best pure racers on the grid, Alonso is a two-time world champion, but has spent the past two years hampered by an underperforming McLaren.

Hamilton and Alonso were tempestuous team-mates at McLaren in 2007 and, after plenty of his own quarrels with the Englishman, Rosberg says a reunion would have been entertaining.

The newly appointed Mercedes ambassador told Marca: “Everyone says Alonso and I say it too, because there would be fireworks with Hamilton.

“As a fan, it would be nice, but for the team, it wouldn’t work.

“They’ve found a great solution. Bottas is fast and though Hamilton will be at a very, very high level and it will be difficult to beat him, I have proved that he can.”

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