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Fernando Alonso pledges future to McLaren amid Mercedes rumours

Fernando Alonso had underlined his commitment to McLaren -- and ruled himself out of a switch to Mercedes -- during a visit to the team's factory this week.

McLaren tweeted a photo of Alonso addressing the team's workforce with the quote: "I believe in the project, I am committed and I want to be world champion with McLaren-Honda. That's my only goal".

The quotes fly in the face of rumours last week that linked Alonso to a move to Mercedes to replace the retiring world champion Nico Rosberg. Mercedes boss Toto Wolff said last week that he considered Alonso as a candidate, but the Spaniard's comments combined with those of manager Flavio Briatore suggest any deal is dead in the water.

Pasillos con encanto..😍😍😍 #mclaren #honda #14 #best #legends

A photo posted by Fernando Alonso (@fernandoalo_oficial) on

Alonso returned to McLaren in 2015 to coincide with the return of engine supplier Honda. The team has struggled for results since then, but is optimistic of another step forward in the coming year.

Alonso's current contract is due to expire at the end of 2017.