What’s Dani worth, a.k.a “Pay the man!

Money! Yeeeaaah, that's what I want!

The price of success can almost be quantified. Whether justified or not, every player involved in that success, if they have a contract that is anywhere in the realm of being up for renewal, wants more money. Mo, mo, mo, mo.

Dani Alves is no exception. We have fiscal complexities at every turn. Gerard Pique is up for a renewal, and we have to deal with the kids. But also, we have our Brazilian Hummingbird who, dependent upon who you read, is either unsettled or not going anywhere.

At present Alves, whose contract is up in 2012, makes something around 3.5m per annum, a number he would like to see raised when he renews his deal. BritPress is saying that Alves wants to double his dough, to 7m, to match what he has allegedly been offered by the likes of Chelski, who were in the running for him initially, and Citeh, who weren’t and probably still aren’t, since Dani Boy has been spoiled by a rain of silver the likes of which he may never see again in his already stellar career.

Crikey, that was one hell of a long-ass sentence, wasn’t it?

My view meshes with that of Xavi, which, as our midfield maestro was quoted as saying after we thumped Valladolid, “Having Dani Alves in our team is priceless.” Dude is easily worth 7m per annum, because we’re getting one of the world’s best right backs, and one of the world’s best right wingers. He defends, leads breaks, steals balls, takes free kicks, crosses, passes, vexes, harangues and plays matchaftermatchaftermatch with an unerring reliability.

Even at 7m per, he’s a bargain. The talk is of a two-year extension, which I think is about right. Not only is there value in having him nice and wrapped up for Guardiola (or whomever) next season, but right now, he’s one of the hottest commodities in world football because he’s never awful, and he’s durable. People often say that Maicon is a better right back. Maybe, but not for our club. There’s only one man for that job, and we have him.

So pay him. It’s a bargain at 7m. No, a player shouldn’t be allowed to dictate his own terms, and who even knows if those press reports are true. But even if they aren’t — and I fully realized that absurdity of saying that a guy is underpaid at 3.5m per — he deserves a big, giant, fat raise. Because he is essential to our success.

Put it like this: We’re paying Messi something in the neighborhood of 10.5m, if you believe published reports. Ibrahimovic takes home something in the neighborhood of 9m. I would argue that Dani Alves is every bit as essential to our championship success as either of those two players.

So pay the man.

–Oh, yeah …. this took place at our practice yesterday in Palagrufell, at which thousands of Blaugrana fans turned up.

Not surprisingly, the douchebag had the flag upside down.

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Written by:

In my fantasy life, I’m a Barca-crazed contributor over at Barcelona Football Blog. In my real life, I’m a full-time journalist at the Chicago Tribune, based in Chicago, Illinois.


  1. Eklavya
    February 3, 2010

    By God, are the renewals ever going end?! 🙂

  2. Eduard
    February 3, 2010

    that was a perfect word for that e.e. fan. He looked like he was so ashamed he didn’t even hold it up for 2 seconds.

    I think everyone in the team should be paid the same, 7 mil across the board.

  3. Spencer
    February 3, 2010

    Couple things:

    1. I think Maicon would be so solid for our team. His offense is good, and having a RB as good (or better) at defense as the rest of our backs would make us quite the defensive force. Defense is arguably our worst position right now (if only because we’re the best in the world everywhere else).

    2. 7m a year for Alves is not a “bargain.” I can understand the argument that it is a “fair price,” but he is NOT Messi (nor Ibra), so I wouldn’t say he’s worth more than that. There are some talented RBs out there making far less.

  4. Blow-Granite
    February 3, 2010

    I would say Dani deserves 7 mil a year. He brings a lot to the team. His wide play on the right is essential for Barca opening up the middle of the pitch so the goals come. Just two of his crosses are worth the 7 million salary. 1. The cross he made during the last classico, on which Ibra scored against the EE. 2. The cross he made against Chelsea in the dying minutes, which we all know where it ended.
    These are just a couple. Bottom line is that he is priceless. Give the boy the $7 Mil.

  5. auld super
    February 3, 2010

    You can’t give them all 7m I think he’s maybe worth 100,000 a week but no more. ? And sorry now but never awful? Did you see the game at Stamford Bridge against Chelsea, he was shocking but that was only one game in fairness.

  6. Blow-Granite
    February 3, 2010

    Ah! The Madridista trolls. They have to show up everywhere dont they!!! Love the upside down flag.

  7. cliveee
    February 3, 2010

    can’t agree more, PAY THE DUDE THE MONEY HE DESERVESSSSSSSSSSSS!!!!!!!! 7m is a bargain! PAY HIM!!!!

    • Blow-Granite
      February 3, 2010

      Yeah Cliveee!!! Way to put your word in. I Seconddddddd thatt. Yessssssss!!! Give the boy 7m he is worth it.

  8. ky
    February 3, 2010

    7m is too much. 5-6 is where he belongs.

    By the way, could you guys maybe post something once every 2 days, or atleast only once in 24 hrs? Too many posts that cut off flowing conversations at the comment section. Sometimes even cuts off the ability of your own posts being explored to the fullest. Just a suggestion…

    • Kxevin
      February 3, 2010

      ky, we tend to react to events/news in our world. The complexity of a new post “killing” the one below it is something that our readers have the power to fix, by continuing to post/visit. A new post doesn’t make the ones below it dead, though I know that it seems like it does. We wrestled with that same thing over at The Offside. We still don’t have an answer. 😀

      As for the “Alves isn’t quite worth it comments,” I dunno. When I think that we have a great right back AND right winger, who not only works beautifully with our midfield, but can put the ball on a dime, I say he’s a marquee player. Even this season, he’s been crucial. And recall that his pass vs the EE means we won, instead of drawing that match.

      And I didn’t think he was that awful v Chelsea. Below average, for sure.

      • ky
        February 3, 2010

        How much is Iniesta and Xavi getting paid? As a rule, no one besides the front line diva’s should get more than those two. We have a pay schedule that we should stick to.

        We can get as much barca ‘fix’ from ensuing comments. Some of the somewhat un-newsworthy stuff can be in the comments section, it keeps good discussions going.

      • ky
        February 3, 2010

        Besides, it might be less of a burden and give the moderators a little space to relax and not be over taxed! 😉

      • Phil
        February 3, 2010

        Something that would require a bit more work for you guys to set up would be a forum type system like NSNO (http://www.nsno.co.uk/news.php) uses. News posts on the front page are actually entries in the forum. The discussion about news can take place in those threads while others occur concurrently.

    • Tyler
      February 3, 2010

      sorry ky, but I have to disagree with you here. with Barca only playing once a week right now i NEED my Barca fix and this site does it better than anyone by providing insightful, intelligent commentary on my favorite thing in life. I need at least a post a day from this place to keep myself from going insane. cutting it down to once every 2 days or one in 24 hours would send me comatose. in fact, i would welcome 10 posts a day if Kxevin, Hector, and Isaiah were robots whose sole purpose was to type about Barca ; )

      • Eduard
        February 3, 2010

        Wait, they’re not robots?!?!?! jk…

        I second that, I would welcome any new post. If someone wants to keep a discussion going they can just reintroduce it in a new post.

  9. Tyler
    February 3, 2010

    recently I was thinking about our best games this season. and when I thought about them I realized that in all those games (typically) alves was on fire in that game. He is PRICELESS and only Maicon can be held in the same regards as him. When he plays well he makes our team nearly unstopable, and what he does in tandem with Messi is invaluable. Remember last Saturday? With Puyol as a right back or winged attack fell virtually flat. 7 million is a bargain, because honestly who else could do a better job than Alves? I’d like one serious suggestion and don’t say Maicon.

    Also, does anyone else find it strange how little (I say that in very relative terms) soccer stars get paid? For example, Peyton Manning arguably the best NFL player and one of the NFL’s biggest stars gets paid 21+ million a season!! Messi the best football player in the WORLD – and mind you football has much more of a worldwide reach than the NFL – only gets paid 10.5m??? NFL players only have a 16 game season, albeit a very hard, punishing one, but still with champions, la liga, and copa barca is playing some 70+games this season, and then most of them will be off to world cup. It’s just so weird to me the disparage between the two pay scales. Although not that any of it matters, they are all filthy stinkin’ rich.

    • ky
      February 3, 2010

      American sports have more money, mainly by great marketing and huuuuge tv rights. And soccer has many more teams and players, so the money gets spread. And no bargaining agreements in soccer where around 50% of revenues are guaranteed to go to players like nfa and nba.

  10. Soto
    February 3, 2010

    Setting aside ones opinion of Alves’ worth (full disclosure: I think he’s worth it), how does such a pay raise for him and others fit into the overall budget?

    The recent reports stated that Barcelona netted US$11 million in 2009. That may sound like a lot, but compared to their operating budget, it’s just a minor fraction. If we bump Alves by around US$3 million and Pique similarly and then a few others, we will rapidly consume that profit. Adding in the fact that this year we may not make as much due to a lingering recession, less cup play (i.e. we are no longer in Copa del Rey), and the costs of the election, I begin to wonder about our financial state. We can of course take on loans since even in this current credit market a commodity like Barcelona can find a favorable line of credit, but I would hope that we work hard to never get into the kind of situation facing Real Madrid and Manchester United and others.

    So, I hope that the players are able to negotiate fair and reasonable contracts, but I also hope that the election bonanza does not drive us to make unwise long term financial commitments just to meet short term goals.

  11. SoccerMom
    February 3, 2010

    The man is worth his weight in gold and then some.
    He was the Scary Factor @ Sevilla.
    Nobody tiki taka w. Messi like Dani.
    Nobody not even Xavi kicks a cleaner cross.
    Nobody work harder run faster play d-to-o and back again.
    Plus he is never ever too tired / too injured / to play-ed out no matter who / what / why the match.
    Plus he’s a bit of an *&%$#. And we miss that aprés Deco.
    Anyone else down on Dani gets a time-out.

  12. JMo
    February 3, 2010

    Tyler, the reason for the financial disparity between the paychecks of world class football players and top level NFL players has to do with the socially accepted paradigm.

    In American sports, inflated paychecks were pioneered through baseball, which ultimately led to a unified player’s union across all athletic fronts. Once the players realized they could hold out for so much and get it, why would they settle for less.

    While the NFL is much less popular on the international stage, the amount of money poured into the NFL per average citizen in the U.S. is, I do believe, MUCH higher. Peyton’s contract is about 14 million per year, whereas Alex rodriguez and Manny Ramirez make over 20 million a year. Perhaps they are better examples of this ridiculousness.

    In American sports, the individuals are bigger than the sport itself. I hate it. The average american hates it, but it’s the reality of sports in the U.S.

    I don’t feel like that is the case in Euro football, at least for now. No player is bigger than the game of futbol, and they players who try to think so usually fall off the scope. (Maradona) I think a large reason for that is because of the international popularity and emphasis on redemptive hope offered to countries through tournaments such as the World Cup and the ACN.

    • Tyler
      February 3, 2010

      very good points, I guess you also have to consider t.v. advertising during an nfl game. After watching so much soccer these days, its hard to sit through an NFL game cuz every two minutes is a five minute commercial break. what should be a two hour game turns into a four hour ad fest, whereas a futbol game is wrapped up nicely in less than two hours usually.

      also another topic of interest: champions league drew more viewers than the super bowl in 2009 for the first time ever!

      • Hector
        February 3, 2010

        I remember reading recently that if you take away all the pre-snap motions and going-on’s, an NFL game has in the vicinity of 10 minutes of actual action (i.e. from snap/kick to whistle). Don’t get me wrong, I like NFL and NCAA football but that’s just insane.

        • JMo
          February 3, 2010

          I read that too Hector. If you remove all the stoppage time, in your average football game, only 12 minutes of actual gameplay take place.

          • Tim
            February 3, 2010


            Here’s the link to the article talking about the fact that NFL games have 11 minutes of gameplay in a 3+ hour broadcast.

    • Blow-Granite
      February 3, 2010

      Thanks for digging that up Kxevin. That is awesome!!!

  13. vicsoc8
    February 3, 2010

    Henry is training again today, but more interestingly Muniesa and Dalmau were called up to train with the team. Dalmau typically plays as a marauding right back, while Muniesa can play as a center back or left back. It also seems Abidal has sustained a few niggles and may be questionable.

    • Hector
      February 3, 2010

      I really liked Dalmau during his pre-season cameos. I hope he has a good time in practice.

      Assuming that both those guys go back to Athletic and now that Thiago, JDS, and Gai are back, how sick does Luis Enrique’s line-up look?

      Montoya/Dalmau, Bartra, Fontas, Muniesa
      JDS, Sergi Roberto, Thiago
      Gai, Rochina, and Riverola

      Not bad at all.

      • vicsoc8
        February 3, 2010

        How do you think that team would do in the first division? I beat the wouldn’t finish last.

  14. BA
    February 3, 2010

    damn you, Spain, for your abundance of good-looking women.

    that is all.

  15. BA
    February 3, 2010

    incidentally, looks like that man Suarez is tearing it up in Holland:


    • Blow-Granite
      February 3, 2010

      Suarez is quite a bit overrated. He is doing well in Holland where the quality of play is not as high as in the big 3 Eng, Esp or Ita. This is the same team where Huntelaar comes from.

      • Mikel
        February 4, 2010

        On the other hand, both Ronaldo and Romario were playing in Holland and came to play here to great success. And Luis Suarez is not a one-season wonder, as he has been a consistent goalscorer in the 2 previous seasons. And i still rate Huntelaar as a great player, just having a bad year in Milan.
        My order of preference for signings next season:

        1)Luis Suarez

        • Mikel
          February 4, 2010

          Besides, i think Suarez is not a striker like Huntelaar, but a winger, and it would be sweet to have a winger scoring that number of goals, like Henry did last season.

    • cliveee
      February 4, 2010

      agreed, somehow football in holland creates illusions… but Suarez had scored 4 goals in a game many times… it just can’t stop making people wonder how this type of player will do elsewhere.

  16. Eduard
    February 3, 2010

    As a possible future post can on of you guys investigate what Luis Enrique is doing with his young talents? I’m a big fan of Enriques, he is my all time favorite.

  17. JMo
    February 3, 2010

    I posted on my facebook account that I officially announced that I did NOT want Cesc fabregas this transfer window, and then all my EPL buddies starting making remarks about it. It was quite the time. I would encourage you to do the same if you have a good footy community on your facebook list.

    • Blow-Granite
      February 4, 2010

      Yeah JMo!!! He can stay at Emirates and up his Arse…nal.

  18. areign
    February 4, 2010

    not even the madridistas want to see madrid practice.

  19. segun
    February 7, 2010

    pls txiki & co dis worth 7mil coz of is workin rate & d potencial he pocess

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