Dani Alves is hoping his penchant for winning cups rubs off on his team mates when Juventus try to end a 21-year wait for the Champions League title by beating Real Madrid on Saturday. During a trophy-laden eight years with Barcelona the 34-year-old Brazilian right back won the Champions League three times as well as three Club World Cups and three UEFA Super Cups.
Add in the two UEFA Cups he won with Sevilla and it is obvious why Juventus feel that in Alves they have a player who can guide them to European glory.
Alves is no lover of record books, however, and says his vast collection of silverware will mean nothing if Juventus fall short in Cardiff’s National Stadium.
“The moments you have had are just history but history is made in every moment,” Alves, a key figure in Juve’s domestic double having signed last year, told reporters on Friday.
“You need to try every day to add pages to that story – life has brought me to this team to try to deliver this dream.
“I don’t feel more important just because I’ve been through this. I just came to try to share this dream with them.”
Alves is the second-most decorated footballer of all time in European competitions with nine winners’ medals – one behind former AC Milan great Paolo Maldini on the all-time list.
He won the Champions League in 2008–09 and 2010–11 and again in 2014–15 with Barca when Juventus were their victims in the final.
Veteran keeper Gianluigi Buffon, who was in goal for Juve two years ago and will be again on Saturday, is yet to add a Champions League winners’ medal to his showcase and Alves would like nothing more than to fill that space for his team mate.
“For a player as a big as Gigi it wouldn’t change his career as a player but I think it would be one more wonderful page added to his football history,” he said.
“When I arrived I said they weren’t signing a star but a worker who wanted to achieve things with them, in order to take the Cup home. We need to make sure the dream comes reality and it would be something to finally win this trophy with Buffon. It’s nice to live all this again with my new team mates.”
After nearly a decade being a thorn in the left-hand side of a succession of Real Madrid teams with Barca, Alves plays down the significance of Saturday’s opponents.
“It’s special to me but it’s not Dani Alves v Real Madrid, it’s Juventus v Real Madrid,” he said.