Dani Alves and the duration of an athlete’s time at a club

Let’s begin at the beginning:

If Dani Alves had come from La Masia, his renewal would already be finished. Whether this is a good thing is another question. But because he isn’t, his case is really an excellent one as it lets us sit back and reasonably think about progression, and precisely when it is time for a club to allow an athlete to move on, or when an athlete should decide to move on. The reasons aren’t always sporting.

We forget that athletes are human until they evince human qualities. Dani Alves is one of the favorite whipping boys in the Barça XI. Cules talk crap about his defending, his crossing, his clothes, and have for some time. It is only now, when they think that the club only has crappier alternatives that Alves must be renewed at all costs.

The loyalty question is interesting. Dani Alves isn’t definitely leaving. When asked if he had ruled out staying at Barça, his answer was “Right now, yes.” He also said that the club knows what it has to do, and that its offer is way behind that of others that he has received. And the telling quote, for many: “I am with the team 200 percent. The club, about 10 percent.”

That quote draws a very clear distinction between the club and team, that the two are not the same. Further, if Alves feels that way, you can probably surmise that more than a few players who would never say such a thing at a presser are also feeling the same way. This obviously has the effect of damaging the board a bit before the elections in the eyes of some, but it’s a safe bet that the conservative socis aren’t that fond of Alves and his antics anyhow.

“I am a Barça player until June 7.”

In the wake of the Alves press conference, the words most often heard are “Douglas” and “Montoya.” Culers firmly believe that these are the only two RB option the team has to consider and for that reason, Alves is priceless. “At any cost” is another phrase being tossed about, one that we should look at a bit.

Alves wants big money, and a guaranteed 3-year contract. Barça would be stupid to give him that. If that means that he leaves, then so be it. The succession planning for that position has been poor for years, because clubs tend to believe that because a player likes winning and playing with a great team, that he can be left hanging until they are ready. Alves has surprised them, but I am not sure why. An athlete, like anyone else, wants security. Xavi isn’t going to Qatar for humanitarian reasons. Dude is going to get paid. Alves wants to know that when he hangs up the boots in a few years, he will be set. There is no shame in that game, and anyone who begrudges him that avarice is misguided.

Football usually isn’t about loyalty. It’s about money. The board has calculated, for the moment, that it would be too expensive to keep Alves at the terms the player wants. Alves has decided that it would be too cheap for him to stay at the terms the board wants. At with any negotiation, the ultimate value of something is what each side determines the worth is.

From my seat, the Alves presser is kinda bullshit, because it was supposed to be about his future and the decision. Instead it is a bold-faced (albeit entertaining) negotiation ploy. It isn’t a distraction, because the team knows what it has to do. But if Alves hasn’t decided, he shouldn’t have had the presser. Sit tight, let your team work, and make a decision. There’s plenty of time for pressers after the two finals the team still has to play.

This was a negotiation ploy that a daring player pulled off, and hats off to him for it. We bought it. During that presser, he said that he is happy to be working with Douglas and Montoya, but Enrique chooses him because he works harder. Again, it’s a negotiation ploy. He knows the qualities of those players, and he knows what a fanbase thinks about those players. No shame in using that perception to light a fire under the club. “If they don’t renew me, you will have Montoya and Douglas,” is what he has said in effect.

Alves said that he was having the presser because a lot of nonsense was being said in the media. But there are easier ways to manage that. The only thing being said about Alves is that he was leaving the club, with PSG the most likely destination. So you find a favored journalist, and give him the quote that such a thing is rubbish. Done. Instead he holds a presser that rather blatantly capitalizes on the negative perception of the board in many eyes, say that he doesn’t feel valued.

“They said I only think about money, but it’s not like that.”

Okay. But then don’t mention that Barça’s offer trails the others, discuss the intangible things that you feel should be part of that offer. The simple fact of the matter is that Alves is on the fence because the club isn’t offering him enough money or a long enough guaranteed contract to stay.

“I am not thinking about money, but about what I do being valued after everything I have done, everything I have achieved for this club.”

Let’s return to that Masia question. The only reason culers are wanting Alves to stay is because a better alternative isn’t clear. If Montoya had panned out, folks would be helping Alves pack his bags. When Alves wasn’t playing all that well, people were ready to pack them for him anyhow. He is a cause celebre at present mostly because he has raised his game at contract time, as many athletes do. Can he sustain that game? Interesting question. Play for pay is an interesting idea. Teams hate guarantees because why should a player keep working hard to prove anything? Players love guarantees because security is good.

Victor Valdes left the club, it seems, for many of the same reasons that Alves is thinking about leaving, that much-heard “respect.” For Valdes, it wasn’t about money. He got paid, but left the club for some reason only he knows. What is the Alves motivation? If it’s respect and damage done, this presser is, like the Valdes one, cut and dry. “See ya later.” Is it for Alves, and how different would the perception of the player have been from supporters and the club over time, if he was a Masia product instead of a paid transfer from Sevilla, and again, would his renewal have been done if he was a Masia product?

Keep Alves at any cost? What would the cost have been to keep Xavi, and would it have been worth it? Xavi has a guaranteed, 3-year deal for a metric shit ton of money, when he has maybe another season of top-flight football in his legs. It’s worth asking how culers would have felt had Xavi stayed for big money on the same deal as Qatar, playing in spots and essentially hanging out with the team his last two seasons. Xavi didn’t want to do that because of how he feels about Barça, but also how he feels about himself.

“I do not have the feeling that the club values what I have done for this club.”

Again, there is that distinction, and the message is clear: I have been dissed by this board, a group that is on the hot seat for many socis. Alves also mentions that he has been contacted by a presidential aspirant, but that his mind will be made up long before the election. So why mention it, except to stoke the flames that are already engulfing a hot seat? Alves says that the question isn’t contract duration, then what is it? Is it as simple as Bartomeu having him over a dinner? Does he want a mini statue?

“I still want to stay here, but not at any price. And I’m not talking about money but about respect.”

Alves is brilliant in how he worked the situation, but he’s also a little desperate. If he had the offer from another club that he wanted, he wouldn’t have had the presser. He would have taken the offer, told his teammates and had his presser after the season. Valdes didn’t have a presser saying “Well, I’ve been dissed, etc, etc.” His presser said “I’m leaving, and that’s that.”

Alves would like to stay, but should he stay, purely from a sporting perspective. What’s the cost? Recall the last year at the club of Thierry Henry and how that sat with culers. Alves would be making one hell of a lot more than Henry, but his shelf life as the kind of RB that he is, is limited. We already saw cracks in the armor, until a tactical shift allowed him to return to being a very effective player. Would the praise for Alves’ play be as high if he had faced Ribery? Good question.

“[The club] just started talking to me about this 3-4 months ago, because according to them I’m playing better.”

Well, that’s true. Why should a business entity give an employee not meeting standards a raise? This isn’t all about the board, though a club’s supporters often side with a player, particularly in the case of a board that for so many is on bad paper? Players want more money, but if a club tries to take money back when his performance lags, that would never happen, nor should it. Everyone seeks the best deal that they can.

From my seat, keeping Alves has to be weighed against the cost potential. If not having Alves as RB would cost the team a chance at ultimate success, then it’s worth it to renew him. If not, he can leave. It’s that simple, really. All of the other talk about respect, etc, is just clouding the waters. What is the real cost of Alves staying or going, and can the club bear the brunt of it?

This isn’t about the board, even as my views on that entity are well known. It’s about an employer making the best decision about an employee, and that employee seeking the best possible deal for himself. All the rest is blather. Today’s presser was well played by Alves. It basically said, “I want to stay, but it’s up to the board.” Yes, that same board that is facing perception problems, difficulties that would be washed away in a blizzard of confetti were the team to win the Treble. So Alves knows it’s now or never, and he took his shot.

“Loyalty” and “respect’ are often bandied about in conversations about players and teams. What isn’t often discussed is when it is really time for a player to move on. A club’s ideal is to sell a player a season before his performance drops, for the maximum fee. That rarely happens. A club nightmare is for a player with value to leave on a free, because they don’t get paid. A player with minimal value but a big contract would love to leave on a free, because any transfer fees can instead go into the salary kitty. And in the end it all comes down to money.

What Dani Alves does as a player and bon vivant is brilliant. If he isn’t at the team next season, it would be a loss. But his situation makes us face a very complex question about what a player has left in his tank. In other words, is the real Alves the last few months, or the time before that? Sport is “what have you done for me lately?” Contracts are “What can you do for me?” A veteran player, especially one of Alves’ age and type, sits at the complex nexus between those two realities.

Xavi was excellent as a bit player, but not a full-time starter. He had reached that point. Alves isn’t at that point yet, but how close is he and how much money is it worth to find out? That is the question at issue here. All the rest is blather and entertainment.

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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.

36 Comments

  1. May 25, 2015

    Excellent perspective, and a pretty hard question as well!

  2. georgjorge
    May 25, 2015

    I think that losing Alves before next season starts might well present us with difficulties at winning the league. His loss might cost us a few precious points during the first half of the season (and his replacement won’t fit perfectly into the team from winter onwards as well).

    I also don’t quite get the “respect not money” bit and what he wants the president to do about it that doesn’t have to do with money. I don’t think it has anything to do with what culers talk about in bars or on internet sites.

    But it’s astonishing enough that aside from right back (if Alves leaves), this team has brilliant quality at every single position now, and is clicking together very well as a team as well. Defense is stacked, midfield is in a very good position (though someone needs to come in for rotating Iniesta and Rakitic but I think it’s manageable until winter) and attack is legendary anyway (again, someone for rotations in case Pedro leaves but until winter Munir or whoever from B might suffice).

    • May 25, 2015

      Damn right it makes winning the league very hard next season.

      Nobody knows how much (or how little) has been offered or what it would take for Dani Alves to stay. I think it is fairly obvious however that the “lack of respect” has been that the club waited so long to negotiate his renewal. In that sense, it was never about money. Now that DA sees how much other clubs are willing to pay him, it has indeed become about money.

    • dl
      May 25, 2015

      I think that is a probably close to the truth, Lev (your take on the ‘lack of respect’ issue). I hope he stays, for many reasons.

      With regard to Kevin’s essay, though, I think the very first sentence is suspect. That Alves’ contract would already have been renewed if he had been a Masia grad is a simple assertion, nothing more. Every career ends (or continues at another club, until it really ends), even for Masia grads. And as regards Valdes and his moving on, it seems to me I read an article in the past actually quoting him where he talked about how he simply wanted to experience something other than Barcelona while he still could. That’s a very human and understandable motivation.

      But back to Alves, I hope it all works out well for him and for fcb. I’d like to see him stay. Without knowing much about what goes on in the club, it looks from my vantage point to be another cockup by the board. But hey, what do I know?

    • georgjorge
      May 25, 2015

      I would be careful with your last sentence until we have an estimation of the figures (salaries + contract years) involved, which we might never get. I wouldn’t put it past Alves (or many players in his position actually) to have demanded something too high to be reasonable in terms of either one. We just don’t know.

    • Davour
      May 25, 2015

      Exactly. As has been said: he will get a swell salary at some other club since they do not have to pay any transfer fee. Rumor is he is asking for a raise, pointing to these offers. A raise? He is 33, looking for a 3-year contract, while he probably only has one more season of top flight in him.

      I think Alves has a great spring and was an essential part in the team’s success. But he had a poor autumn, and as Kxevin says: who knows which Alves we will get? Or: how much of each persona?

      I would love for him to stay another season, and I wish this had been taken care of years ago (either extension or replacement). But from any perspective I can’t see the board offering 3-years and a raise. And – despite any mistakes they have made in the past – they shouldn’t.

      Though, form a money perspective, I am sometimes baffled: Kxevin writes about Alves wanting to “be set” when he is done, just like Xavi is looking for gold in Qatar, and Thiago Silva rejecting Barca’s lower salary, saying he has a family to support. Sure, the clubs make tons of money from the players, but – please – some perspective on how much money a person needs. I think Alves is – or should be – pretty set as it is.

  3. Yaredinho
    May 25, 2015

    “[The club] just started talking to me about this 3-4 months ago, because according to them I’m playing better.”

    and you…

    Well, that’s true. Why should a business entity give an employee not meeting standards a raise? This isn’t all about the board, though a club’s supporters often side with a player, particularly in the case of a board that for so many is on bad paper? Players want more money, but if a club tries to take money back when his performance lags, that would never happen, nor should it. Everyone seeks the best deal that they can.

    So why you want to judge (or frustrated by) Dani based on this presser then?

    A very average article by your standard, Kxevin.

  4. Raj
    May 25, 2015

    I feel if LE can manage with Bartra or Douglas or Montoya, Alves can leave for better place who can value him more… Btw, any comments on Douglas debut performance? Seeing him bit hesitant to make a move forward. Can he scale up?

  5. ChaoticReaper
    May 25, 2015

    I’m pretty sure Pedro can do everything Alves can. RB is pretty much a forward half the time and Pedro has a good cross and chemistry with Messi and probably a shot that doesn’t go into the stands.

    Defensively, all that needs to be done is to clear the ball and be a nuisance which Pedro can do. Alves is at fault for a bunch of points we lost this season.

    • May 25, 2015

      Dani Alves has been one of the best RB’s in the world for the better part of the last decade. It is quite the assumption to say Pedro can do everything Dani can.

    • agar2515
      May 25, 2015

      Hes just going to easily slot in and replacement a legend? I knew that some people really liked Pedro but this is too much…

    • ChaoticReaper
      May 25, 2015

      Tell me what Alves does besides cross into the box, one-twos with Messi, shots into the rafters, and halfhearted attempts at defense.

  6. Obii
    May 25, 2015

    It’s easy to brand this presser by Alves a negotiation tactic, but I think (and I may very well be wrong), that there is much more to this than meets the eye.

    Alves is one of the most vocal members of the team, especially so considering his non-Barca background. He isn’t afraid of calling out the board for its behavious towards players, and has done so in the past. He was the one player who spoke up when the Abidal fiasco took place, and I feel like he may be coming from a similar place this time too.

    He speaks about the media trial that he was subjected to. Is it not true that the local Catalan papers seem to be mouthpieces for the club as well?

    Yes, he is trying to negotiate the best deal for himself by pressurizing the board, but there also seem to be perceived slights against the player, not simply relating to contractual issues.

  7. Jim
    May 25, 2015

    Well, he’s not getting much sympathy from me. He’s been poor this season up until the contract renewals started. Seen it happen time and again in Scottish football with players from abroad.

    He is still our best RB and there’s not much on the market, even if the ban wasn’t in place. However, my bet would be that he’s asking Barca to match some of the money he’s been offered elsewhere. We’d be daft to do that.

    I also don’t like his methods much. I’m pretty much with Kxevin on the strange choice of press conference, with nothing to announce, just to slag his employers. We don’t need to put up with that sort of crap from players. If he thinks there’s been disrespect in some way what is the point in calling a presser just to say it has happened but I’m not saying what it was ? BS.

    He left Sevilla in tears saying he’d love to return there one day. I’m sure they might make him an offer. Meanwhile, why hasn’t Bartra been given the chance there? I’ve been calling for this from the start of the season, he played really well in his first game there, he needs game time or he’ll be off. What’s the issue ? Make Dani sub for the final and give him a shot. He won’t let us down.

    • georgjorge
      May 26, 2015

      I’m not at all thrilled about Bartra at right back, as much as I like him at centre back. You need a lot of pace as a fullback (at least playing for Barca) and Bartra doesn’t have it. Montoya isn’t the fastest guy, but he’s still a good deal faster than Bartra. Bartra would be reduced to not going forward the whole game – I can get that from Montoya as a natural right back.

  8. cain_aconia
    May 25, 2015

    I think I am lost about what the article is trying to say. A few thoughts nevertheless:

    1. I don’t blame Dani and I don’t blame the board. i think both are well-justified in their approach, and whichever way this goes will be determined by what we call in industry BATNA (best alternative to negotiated agreement). From where I see Dani has a better BATNA and he better uses it.
    2. I don’t think we can afford to lose both Pedro and Dani in the same window (especially without being able to sign anyone)
    3. Benitez, eh? Let’s hope so because I don’t want Unai Emery in the whoite camp. I love the dude and also Nuno Santo (even though for some reason he reminds me of a much younger Scolari)

  9. ciaran
    May 25, 2015

    At this point I see Dani as an asshole. He has been a great servant to the team and has been integral to winning many many titles but currently he’s a cancer.
    From late night parties, ever decreasing discipline both tactically and in bookings, inconsistent performances until recently and vocal calling out of the board on numerous occasions I can’t say that he deserves any more than an applause as he leaves.

    He should shut his mouth until he has made his mind up because contract negotiations shouldn’t be public. Raheem Sterling is trying to hold Liverpool to ransom and Dani is doing the same.

    Normally it’s a scumbag agent who handles this sort of thing like Yaya Toure’s one allowing the player to keep some sort of goodwill but no player is bigger than the club. Even if he was at the height of his powers he shouldn’t be acting like he is but after a couple of inconsistent seasons he has finally settled into a good run of form and now thinks that he deserves a raise?

    If a player plays well he deserves a raise but if he plays badly he doesn’t deserve a pay cut?

    On the positive side, Perez once again fired his manager meaning yet another transitional season for Madrid so we can probably afford to let Dani go. I miss him marauding down right side of the pitch like he used to but I think the time has come to move on.

    • agar2515
      May 25, 2015

      Dani is hardly a ” cancer”… he’s beloved by fans and players alike. His conference was gold, especially not answering the Marca journalists question.

      What benefit of the doubt has the board earned? I mean they bought DOUGLAS as a replacement for the world’s best RB…

      Both sides make my eyes roll. Surely after everything they could come to some sort of agreement until we can buy a suitable replacement in January? Some sort of compromise. Then I forget pro players don’t think like us, they need that $$

    • ciaran
      May 25, 2015

      I read this article then read Dani’s press conference and it pissed me off. Yes cancer is too strong a term but he is certainly isn’t any sort of role model. He’s the best paid right back in the world and has been for quite a while.
      He doesn’t owe us anything but we don’t owe him anything either. He’s been well compensated for his efforts.

      Even though he will leave a massive hole in our squad that will be practically impossible to fill I firmly believe that it’s in our best interests to let him go.

      It is incredibly difficult to ascertain who is the best player to replace him too. There’s a lack of quality right backs out there now.

    • Yaredinho
      May 25, 2015

      Dani never been close to being cancer to Barca, let alone to be called “cancer”. Every player shouldn’t be expected to be the perfect role model either!!!

      The surprising thing is how people are convinced how much he is asking, the amount the club is willing to pay, all those details…as if we are part of the negotiations.

    • Jim
      May 25, 2015

      You know, I can’t believe I’m saying this but I thought Douglas was decent in the last game. Yes, he played like a player on death row in the sense that he knew one mistake was curtains forever but it confirmed for me that he has the technical ability, he can play with his head up and he looked like he understood the system better.

      With more confidence he’d be worth keeping an eye on. Can he develop that, though ?

    • ciaran
      May 25, 2015

      It’s difficult for Montoya and Douglas as they know regardless of their performance that Dani is the undisputed starter. It puts huge pressure on their performance as there is no up side, only a down side.
      Montoya has always played too safe which is a pity because he actually has good timing on his forward runs and is solid defensively if not spectacular.
      Douglas is harder to judge. Those who watched him week in and week out in Brazil think that he isn’t up to scratch but I can’t say that I’ve an opinion based on anything but the fact that Lucho hasn’t seen anything like the quality needed to start him over Montoya or Dani.

      It’s a pity that the B team has had such a bad season because it’s really hard to justify any players promotion to the senior squad. Patric has shown leadership in a team that is sorely lacking in it and deserves a look in preseason.

    • May 25, 2015

      I agree that Montoya has GREAT timing on his forward runs, but I don’t see this as a good thing because it means someone will pass the ball to him and the chances of something good happening in those situations are minimal.

      [Editing for clarity] Just to make sure. I didn’t mean the above as a sarcastic remark as I myself have often said exactly this, the man makes excellent forward runs… why, God, why???

  10. agar2515
    May 25, 2015

    And as stated above, CHEERS TO PAPA FLO!!! Thanks for sacking a coach players and fans loved, that got the best out of a squad lacking in key areas, full of vanity purchases that he had to play, and on and on.

    Ps Please let us have Isco, thank you.

    • Jim
      May 25, 2015

      Yeah, I quite liked him and he understood the need to improve their general passing ability. Without continual injuries to Modric who ran their midfield life could have been interesting.

      (please don’t confuse the above with sympathy . ) I look forward to Benitez and then whoever comes the year after.

  11. agar2515
    May 25, 2015

    @Ciaran

    I also agree there is no immediate “We need HIM!” RB candidate out there. I’d still advocate a Bartra/ Monty rotation till January. We eventually survived Dani’s sleepwalking the first half of the season and we weren’t anywhere near the collective unit we are now.

    Also, I see what you’re getting at and agree with the sentiment. I wish he saw how bereft we are of a suitable replacement ( if we are being honest and not overly , supremely optimistic about Monty and especially Douglas) and , wanting us to remain as successful as possible, decided to ease his demands.

    Heck, throw your weight around and tell your next club to remember you’re Dani Alves, THE top RB on his best day, marketable/extremely chari$matic and that you won’t be joining until January.

    Work out a half a year contract with us….but then I remember that it’s a business to these players and that there’s kids and girlfriends , wives and ex wives, greedy agents…

    • Davour
      May 26, 2015

      Good point on Alves’ sleepwalking. Would it not be possible to manage with a more conservative RB – say, Bartra – and releasing Rakitic for more attacking tasks? Hopefully, Ivan will be comfortable and ready to assume more responsibility next year.

      I know Bartra does not seem to be an alternative, but I simply can’t see Monty nor Adriano occupy the RB-spot regularly. Alves’ good part of the season showed the need of some good passing skills to make it happen with Messi on the wing. Bartra does not have Alves’ flair, but is a pretty good passer and a great defender. At least until January, it could work…

  12. G6O
    May 25, 2015

    As I said in another thread, prepare for a rough half a season (at minimum) next year.

    The team can play without Dani and Xavi, but can it win the number of points needed to win the league over 19 games without them?

    It’s Douglas and Montoya at right back (BTW, why is nobody mentioning playing Adriano there – that actually looks like the best option at the moment), and Rafinha and Sergi Roberto as backups for Rakitic and Iniesta. Until January. What happens if someone gets injured for a prolonged period of time?

  13. Barcathegreatestever
    May 25, 2015

    When he’s on he’s sensational, as integral to Barcas success as any of the giants. Mundo reported they offered him 3 million a year which is a third of what the others make so I can understand that it’s become a respect thing if it’s true. my opinion is so what if he’s not a starter in 2 years, it’s not just about the cost.

    • georgjorge
      May 26, 2015

      3 million is a third of what the others make? I thought only Messi, Xavi and maybe Iniesta were making close to or over 9 million a year…

  14. Kd
    May 26, 2015

    The way I see this press conference is pretty simple. Alves wants to stay. Surely. And he wants a lot more money than being offered as well as the duration (3 years) which he wants to stay for. Put simply, he wants to stay at Barcelona on his terms. With the recent sporting success and a start of (hopefully) another dynasty makes it imperative for Dani Alves or many other players to be a part of this new project. So he holds a press conference and he wades into the board. He knows that the board already has too many question marks over its head and hence he is in a better position to bargain or force the hand of the President.
    Now Dani Alves is also emotional and sort of wears his heart on his sleeve. And I dont think he will ever forget the way his good friend and colleague was treated by the same board. So in my eyes I think he is justified for arm twisting this board. When they couldn’t give 2 hoots about Abi why should he stop himself from behaving the way he is. After all the President and the board of directors running Barcelona haven’t really covered themselves in goodwill and glory. Some of them spoke shite bout Messi and his contract, some treated Abi unfairly, and some perhaps hastened the departure of Pep. Whatever it may be, the board has little choice and I suspect they will renew.

    • Inamess
      May 26, 2015

      Agree with most of your points about Alves animosity towards the club but had the opposite conclusion. Alves is as good as gone and this press conference was the nail in the coffin, a sort of middle finger as he makes his way to PSG or Man U after potentially winning a treble.

  15. sirax23
    May 26, 2015

    For me the situation is as clear as it gets. Dani Alves put himself above the team, the club or whatever way he wants to call it .With two vital finals still to come for yet another historic treble to come out and disturb even in the slightiest bit the mental calmness of his team (including teammates,techincal stuff and everyone involved) is UNACCEPTABLE. For that reason and that reason only I say goodbye and thanks for the memories.Sure Alves has given a lot in Barca the years he’s been in our club but he’s gained even more.Unparralel sporting success ,which he wouldn’t have gotten in any other team,the chance to play with some of the greatest players in the history of the sport and a whole bunch of money.

  16. Valdemar II
    May 26, 2015

    If Mourinho was Barca’s coach:

    Pedro Suarez Rafinha
    Mascherano Busquets Rakitic
    Mathieu Vermaelen Pique Bartra
    Bravo

  17. sirax23
    May 26, 2015

    Bartra for RB next season ? I wonder if that’s even in Enrique’s mind ? (If he even stays next season…) I mean he should be at least be considered .He’s very good at defending ,can forward the game with the ball on his feet and his passing isn’t half as bad as demonstrated in the few occasions he’s had the chance to show it. For me it makes the perfect sense to at least being tested there all things considering. Thoughts… ??

  18. Cyclops
    May 27, 2015

    I dont quite get yo, if yo are in someway backing the boards approach to the Dani’s case, then for me its really sad

    Truth be told, Alves right now is not the worst of ’em all, and considering the fact that we are banned from signing on players, this shouldnt even be a debate, its not rocket science; Dani Alves on a good day is a solid RB, without him next season we’ll be stuck with just montoya, while i really hope he works out, nothing’s guranteed here…
    So yo wanna throw away a guy, who i dare i say at this point in time is an okay RB, and get stuck in with another guy who the chances of him improving are arguably lower than that of him regressing, what sort of logic is that ??…
    We’re talking about a guy here, who’s given so much- and that dosnt even convey the whole idea, we’re talking somebody who’s given practically everything for the club, if for nothing could yo just do it for respect ?
    We’re talking about not just giving him a contract, but placing him on a level he deserves and has work for, rather than bashing him, booing him, jeering at him at every given opportunity and making him out to look like a newbie who’s just come from some lower division of some obscure Asian league, that hardly know his left from his right…Show some respect people, thats all…
    Yo might not have the ‘time’ to that to every tom dick and harry in yo team, but atleast when its concerns somebody who’s been a monumental pillar in yo team, it shouldnt be such a hard descision now, should it ??

    Aside from the contract, all through the season he’s always been jeered at, and at same time stats has shown that he’s not that ‘evil’, i mean, go over europe right now, and try to see how many quality RB are around, Then see where Dani Alves rate alongside the few available and alas he’s not that terrible, and all that has added up to this situation we’re having now…

    Trying to find fault in his presser, in his demand, and so on, is neither here nor there for me, players are human and all players will more or less do same…Whats important here is, just show the guy some respect, and considering past events like the Abidal debacle, respect is probably not something that we’ve got in bulk on this part of the earth…
    Comparing him to the other RB in europe he’s not that horrible, and considering yo options for next season if he leaves, combined with the fact that it wouldnt be out of place to regards this guy as a club legend, i dont think anybody’s got anyting to lose if atleast something close to his demans are met….
    Its well documented that players, especially top playere hates a ‘ 1 year contract renewal’, lampard just didnt fancy it so left chelsea, now how about doing that to a top player who’s basically- suffice me to say, has define a position, in the least its disrespectful

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