Former Barcelona star Dani Alves has warned Lionel Messi that “everyone” who leaves the Camp Nou ends up regretting the decision no matter why they left the club.
Messi’s future is currently the subject of speculation with the captain out of contract in the summer. It’s not clear yet whether Messi will stay on or look for a new challenge elsewhere.
Alves told Thiago Rabelo at The Guardian that Messi has previously given him advice and he’s been happy to return the favor. The Brazilian admitted he’s warned Messi that he does not know of one player who has not regretted leaving Barcelona.
“I have said to Messi several times: he was born to be a Barcelona player and Barcelona were born to be his club. He has given me advice before so I can do the same to him. Once he told me to stay in Barcelona because there wasn’t any place that was better. ‘Where will you be happier?’ he asked me. So I stayed,” he said. “Now I have reminded him of that conversation and that a good friend [him] advised me that Barcelona is the best place ever. I haven’t had an answer from him yet but when you leave Barcelona you realize how good it is. All the players, and I mean everyone, who has left Barcelona have been sorry. All of them regret leaving, irrespective of the reason.”
Barcelona president Joan Laporta is working on a three-year deal for Messi and is “increasingly optimistic” the captain will opt to continue his career with the Catalan giants, according to ESPN.
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Alves Admits He Wanted Barcelona Return
Alves enjoyed a phenomenally successful eight years at Barcelona, winning the Champions League three times and picking up multiple La Liga and Copa del Rey titles.
The full-back moved on to Juventus and then Paris Saint-Germain before heading back to Brazil with Sao Paolo. However, he also admitted he would have loved to have gone back to Barcelona if he had been given the chance.
“When I left the club, I just wanted to show my value to get back. But, unfortunately, the same people, who were against me when I was at the club, stayed there. I showed that I was able to play for Barcelona for another 10 years. I tried to go back to Barcelona,” he added. “I wanted to go back to Barcelona. I played to go back to Barcelona, but they didn’t want me anymore.”
Is Dest The New Dani Alves?
Barcelona has struggled to find a top-class at right-back replacement since Alves departed. Sergi Roberto and Nelson Semedo have taken turns at right-back in recent seasons but have failed to make the position their own.
The Catalan giants splashed out to bring in Sergino Dest from Ajax in October 2020 and will be hoping the young USMNT star can go on and fulfil his obvious position at the Camp Nou.
Alves was happy to offer advice to Dest after he signed for Barcelona in an interview with RAC1, as reported by Goal.
“If I have to give Dest advice, it’s very simple: pass the ball to Messi,” he said. “Sergino Dest has a lot of quality and has a chance of succeeding at Barca, but I don’t like to make comparisons. It happened to me with Cafu…they don’t make sense.”