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Former Barcelona goalkeeper talks Messi, Neymar, Xavi, Iniesta, Dani Alves



Photo by YOSHIKAZU TSUNO/AFP via Getty Images

Claudio Bravo may have spent just two years at Barcelona, but the Chilean goalkeeper tasted tremendous success during that period.

Indeed, the shot-stopper, who had joined Barça from Real Sociedad in 2014, was part of the treble-winning squad in his debut season and went on to add another La Liga title to his kitty in the next campaign, before eventually leaving for Manchester City in 2016.

During his two-year stint at Spotify Camp Nou, Bravo played with some of the greatest players in the history of the club like Lionel Messi, Xavi, Andres Iniesta, and Dani Alves, among others.

Speaking to The Players’ Tribune, Bravo, who currently plays for Real Betis, reflected on his time at Barcelona and spoke about the superstars he shared the dressing room with.

Looking back on the ordeals he had to go through in his career to finally reach the heights he did upon joining Barcelona, Bravo said:

“When I played at Camp Nou, I always thought about how hard it was for me to get to Barça. When I used the bus, how long I had to wait, the difficulties… And I said to myself, well, now all I have to do is to enjoy.”

Reminiscing his Zamora Trophy success during his time at Barça, the Chilean veteran added: “I was recognised as the best goalkeeper in La Liga and I won the Zamora trophy when I played for Barça. I am very grateful for that.”

Bravo also discussed how he used to celebrate Messi’s goals even before the record Ballon d’Or winner would shoot, saying:

“When I played for Barça, the best player in the world was in our team, Leo Messi. Seconds before Messi took a shot, I was already celebrating his goal.”

Further talking about the Argentina captain, the Real Betis ace added: “Usually we look at players like Messi as if they are from another planet, but I was amazed with Leo. The simplicity he has, his human side. He is a normal person. It’s very easy to interact with him.”

He also touched upon the other big characters in the Barcelona dressing room during his time in Catalonia, saying: “In the big clubs there are very nice people and great human beings. Messi, Xavi, Iniesta… Players who have won a lot of things and are very humble. These are things that we almost never talk about in other players.”

When asked about Neymar, Bravo said: “He’s like a child, just like Griezmann. Ney transmits a lot of happiness, he makes a lot of jokes. He’s a happy boy. You have to have a balance of joy and seriousness in the dressing room, and Ney gave the joy.”

The former Barcelona shot-stopper also hailed the professionalism and commitment of Dani Alves, stating that people sometimes have the wrong image of the veteran Brazilian.

“Many people have a wrong image of Dani Alves. Dani is a very responsible player, very, very professional. He was the first to arrive at training and the last to leave. Every day he went to the gym… But people outside the club have another image of Dani,” he said.

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