the confessions of Dani Alves

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Third in La Liga and still in the running in the Europa League after their draw against Eintracht Frankfurt (1-1) in the first leg of the quarter-finals, FC Barcelona continues to revive under the orders of Xavi, as evidenced by this impressive series 14 games unbeaten. This Sunday, on the occasion of the 31st day of the Spanish championship, the Blaugranas will even have the opportunity to regain their place as runners-up to Real Madrid, temporarily lost to Sevilla FC, in the event of victory against Levante. A new dynamic on which Dani Alves, back at the club last November, also looked into interviews with Catalan dailies Sport and Mundo Deportivo. Asked about the metamorphosis of the Culés, the 38-year-old Brazilian then delivered, without waffling, which today allowed his teammates to shine collectively.

With this in mind, the former Paris Saint-Germain player first recognized the weight of the mental dimension: “The mood has changed. At Barca you have to come to work thinking you have the best job in the world. That you have to suffer during the week to be able to enjoy the games. I found myself in a locker room with low self-esteem. You can’t perform at your best if you don’t believe in yourself. It’s a mental thing. When the mind is weak, what comes from outside can destroy you”. A renewed confidence that the native of Juazeiro has also largely granted to the exceptional work of Xavi since his arrival on the bench of the Catalan club: “Xavi’s secret is hard work. We have to fight, do what we have always done. The only thing that has changed is that he is now a coach. His point of view is the same as when he was playing. We work very hard. It’s the first time since I’ve been at Barça that I’ve worked like this.”.

Dani Alves praises Xavi’s work!

Relaunched on the question of his coach and former teammate with the Blaugranas, the Brazilian international (123 caps, 8 goals) even left himself to a very sincere comparison with Pep Guardiola, whom he also rubbed shoulders with during his first stint in Catalonia: “We’ve never worked with someone like that on a physical level. It is also important to note that football has changed. Before, Guardiola had a lot of good players and we didn’t have to run up and down. Now sometimes it’s time to run, and for that we need a good physique. I already said ten years ago that Xavi would be Barça’s Guardiola 3.0.. Complimentary to Xavi and grateful to have “naturally this leadership role” in the Barcelona locker room, the one who will celebrate his 39th birthday on May 6 has also confided in his still overflowing motivation.

“I think it’s a show of perseverance, respect for your profession, love for what you do. Pleasure too. When I decided to play football, to start my career, I always wanted to give my best while it lasted, until I felt like it. My desire is still intact. I can continue to bring things, to compete, to live the profession as it should be”recognized Alves, proud to defend the colors “from the best club in the world”. Determined to continue the adventure in Barcelona, ​​​​although he calmly leaves the responsibility for this decision to his leaders, the former Juve player has finally returned to the sparkling victory of his team in the Clasico against Madrid. A resounding success for which he did not shy away from his pleasure. This is also a symbol of the Blaugranas’ return to the fore.

“The 0-4 was special because it was a sign that we were coming back. Barca are back in competition and getting people excited. Fans went to Camp Nou not knowing what they were going to see. Respect for the club had been lost. Everyone knows now that we are a competitive team. And that we are going to wet the jersey”. Filled with this new dynamic and ready to end the season on the floor, Alves then put on the sporting director’s costume to deliver his feelings on Barça’s future transfer window. And its positions have the merit of being as clear as they are crisp. Asked about the Kylian Mbappé and Erling Haaland files, recently cited on the side of Catalonia, the Brazilian did not hesitate to decide on the question …

Mbappé rather than Haaland… and Messi!

“I wouldn’t do everything for Haaland. Honestly, I wouldn’t spend a lot of money on it. On Mbappé yes, but not on Haaland. I play sports director, but I would take Mbappé first. I think it is more complete on all aspects. If you have to make a huge investment, you have to do it in the best possible way. If it were up to me, I would choose Mbappé. It’s the best, including for the style of Barça. At the moment, in football, there is no better than him.”. Relaunched on the pronounced interest of Real Madrid for the PSG phenomenon, Dani Alves then prefers to use humor in a smile: “what is white today may be blue tomorrow. And if you add a little garnet to it, it becomes blaugrana… I like good players, they always bring a lot of things. He’s the one I like the most, the one who, in my opinion, would best match the profile of Barça. There are other options, of course, but these are the tastes and the colors». A direct message sent to his management for those who would also dream, above all, of seeing his former teammate Lionel Messi return to the club.

“I don’t know what he thinks or wants to do. I insist again, I could come back for a little year with me for one last dance. Why not. What he told me. There is no other place like it. We can’t be better anywhere than here, it was done for us, the city, the club. He’s gone, he’s tried something different and it’s time to come home if he wants to.”explained Alves before offering his services to quickly finalize the transaction: “This team is narrowly lacking, but Messi could be what any team is missing. We are talking about something else, if it was within my reach, I would fly, I would go there and bring it back here to people”. It now remains to be seen whether the wishes of the native of Juazeiro will be listened to in the coming weeks. One thing is certain, Barça is well and truly back at the top and Alves’ determination has something to do with it.

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