Martin Montoya and Adriano might just make way for Dani Alves to Arsenal. The mercurial Brazilian (Alves in this case), has been one of the best fullbacks for quite some time now. In the past, when Manchester City came out with their deep pockets and Alves was on the verge of a contract expiry, the Brazilian showed his commitment to the club and signed an extension. Even last summer Manchester City reportedly offered €15m and Aleksandar Kolarov to secure the signature of Alves. But Barcelona and Alves stayed put.
However, times have changed and under Vilanova, Montoya has blossomed well and Adriano has been nothing short of a revelation, despite a bad start to the season. Dani Alves on the other hand has been quite a few shades below his original standard. Niggling injuries too haven’t helped his cause either. Brazil has had great players in that position and the fact that Alves is right up there with the top dogs, testifies his ability and it’d be an understatement to say that he has been an important member of the Barcelona team that rewrote history. However, it’s been some time that we have not seen the Alves who owned the right flank with Lionel Messi. Fans will be less worried about his age and injuries and more about his attitude. The hunger to win and win in style seems to be missing and in Martin Montoya, Barcelona perhaps have a good replacement. And with nouveau riche clubs like PSG and Zenit hot on heels, a move to France or Russia isn’t unlikely. And in all fairness, the 30 million defender, once tagged as over-priced, has repaid every penny with his performance over the years and fans have no reason to be aggrieved if he seeks an opportunity to move to a club which would allow him to retire with a bigger pay check. After all, Alves isn’t getting any younger, Barcelona cannot afford his heavy remuneration, and he will still get the Catalan club a decent price. A perfect win-win. Until then, he will still be cherished as the best right back on the planet, who just needs to get his act right.
Arsenal are also in contention for the fullback and on second thought, Alves might give the move some thought and priority given that PSG and Zenit won’t be offering him anything apart from money. Recognition at a rigorous league like the English will be a challenge which the Brazilian will thrive upon – he has often been regarded for his work ethics and attacking prowess and a move to Arsenal seems logical given the kind of football they play. The prospect of playing with the likes of Cazorla, Podolski, Arteta, Wilshere, et al should also be tempting enough to lead the beleaguered Brazilian to the Emirates Stadium. Arsenal seem to have their own problems with Sagna who is on the verge of a contract expiry. It is without an iota of doubt that Alves is a way better player than Sagna and will offer Arsenal the extra momentum in the final third. However, the London club might have a few hitches as far as remuneration is concerned. Alves is also quite used to running riot on the right wing with Lionel Messi as his partner-in-crime. However, no matter what the quality of players are Arsenal is, none of them even come close to the Argentine, who is perhaps on his way to the peak of his abilities. In the absence of someone like Leo, Alves might be rendered a little less useful as he used to be in Barcelona. Even Walcott is not assured of a future at Arsenal. Quick buildup and swift movement might just be of a little hindrance in case Walcott chooses not to continue. Nevertheless, there is no doubt about the qualities of a player of the calibre of Alves and under Wenger, who chooses somewhat play in the Barcelona, Alves should thrive.