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Brazil legend talks Dani Alves, Coutinho and Lionel Messi



Photo by Bruna Prado / Getty Images

Last month, Barcelona pulled off a surprise move by re-signing former defender Dani Alves on a free transfer.

The Brazilian, who turned 38 earlier this year, was a free agent after his contract with Sao Paulo FC had expired in September. And, soon after appointing club legend Xavi Hernandez as the manager, the Catalans swooped in to reunite him with his former teammate, Alves.

The Barcelona and Brazil icon will be unable to play for the club till January when he can be officially registered. And, another Brazilian great, Cafu, hailed his compatriot’s longevity and attitude.

Speaking in an interview with Diario AS, the former Brazil captain said: “Dani Alves return to Barcelona is fantastic news. It is shown that at 38 years old, he can still play in a big club. It is exemplary that he continues to want to be in a great league. That also means that he has a chance to go to the World Cup.”

Cafu also insisted that the experience that Alves would bring for Barcelona and the national team was invaluable. “Experience is very important. I had the opportunity to win a World Cup as a veteran in 2002. That experience is essential, especially when you have a young team around you. It is going to happen to Alves at Barça and in the national team,” he added.

Cafu also spoke about another Brazilian player at Barcelona – Philippe Coutinho. The ex-Liverpool ace has struggled to get going at Camp Nou, but the 2002 World Cup winner backed him to come good for club and country.

“We have high hopes for Coutinho. He is a sensational player. At Liverpool he captured world attention and that is no coincidence. He is a player that Barcelona needs, just like Brazil,” he said.

The 51-year-old former AC Milan defender was also full of praise for ex-Barcelona captain Lionel Messi, who recently won his seventh Ballon d’Or. “I love Messi, I am a fan of the great players. With each passing year, he gets bigger. He has been in the elite for 15 years. He is highly respected by everyone, also by Brazilians,” he said.

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