Dani Alves to sign new contract with Barcelona
SPECIAL REPORT: The Brazilian looked set to leave Camp Nou after rejecting the Catalans’ first offer but he is now ready to commit himself to the club for another two seasons
By Pilar Suarez
Dani Alves has agreed a new two-year contract with Barcelona and will sign on the dotted line inside the next few weeks.
The Brazil international had looked set to leave Camp Nou on a free transfer at the end of the season after rejecting the club’s previous offer of a one-year extension, with the option of two more if he were to play at least 60 per cent of the Blaugrana’s games each season.
Alves’ agent, Dinorah Santa Ana, called a press conference on April 9 during which she claimed there would be no further contract talks and that the right-back was saddened by both Barca’s stance and the prospect of his imminent exit.
The defender’s representative, who is also his ex-wife, also claimed another club had offered her client a three-year deal “with a higher wage”.
However, Alves was not entirely won over by the proposal, while expected interest from Ligue 1 champions Paris Saint-Germain never materialised.
Furthermore, the 32-year-old always wanted to remain in Barcelona. Firstly, his family is settled in the city. Secondly, Alves intends to open a Brazilian restaurant in the Catalan capital.
Consequently, when Barca president Josep Maria Bartomeu returned with a fresh contract offer of two further seasons, Alves was more than happy to accept.
The club’s change of heart was in part motivated by Alves’ excellent form over the past month, with the attacking full-back having played a key role in Barca’s charge towards the Liga title, as well as their Champions League wins over PSG and Bayern Munich.
Indeed, the feeling now is that Alves, even at 32, still has plenty to offer at the highest level, while there is also the acknowledgement that Barca would struggle to find an adequate replacement given their transfer ban runs until January.
Consequently, a compromise has been reached and will now be made official before the end of the month.