Dani Alves: We were like Muhammad Ali that day
- Copy link
Five years to the day after winning the Champions League final against Juventus in Berlin, Dani Alves still remembers the game as if it were yesterday. The Brazilian was part of the team that lifted the fifth Champions League title in the Club's history and a third in a Barça shirt for the defender. The right back looked back at that fateful day in Germany in 2015 and the win over the Italian side in an interview with UEFA.com.
Memories of the final
“I remember pretty much everything about the final. It's very recent and not a lot of time has passed since then. I remember it was a very special moment but also a tough one on a personal and collective level. People thought we couldn't win another treble and were supporting our opponents to stop us doing it. We were aware that people thought we could not do it. When you are prepared to face that, it's unlikely negative things happen. That is Barça's secret in finals: they are always prepared."
“The atmosphere was incredible, the support as well: we were really focused. That is what I love most about Barça: when you get to a final, you know the worst is over and it is time to enjoy it. When you enjoy it, you forget about your opponent's chances."
Juventus: tough opponents
“We were up against very physical opponents and we knew we had to win by having the ball. It does not matter how strong your opponents is if you have them chasing after the ball so that they get tired. The moment they let their guard down is the moment to attack. We were like Muhammad Ali: we floated like a butterfly and stung like a bee. I think we were deserving winners of the final and we celebrated a lot as we had repeated the treble."
An unbeatable start
“Rakitic's goal at the start of the game was vital. These type of games tend to be more psychological than physical. To think that you are facing one of the best teams in the world and then they score in the first few minutes changes your approach to the game. Despite that, I have never seen a final in which a team has not had a chance to win the match. For that reason we had to be alert and when you conceded a goal against Juventus or against Manchester United at Wembley it makes you alert and you don't change your approach as there is no time for improvisation."
Reaction after equaliser
“Despite Morata making it 1-1, we never stopped being a team. We said to oursevles: 'Don't worry, come on lads, keep going! The trophy is ours!' We encourages each other because if not, you go into the dressing room with your head down."
- Copy link