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Dani Alves not leaving Barcelona

Dani Alves says he has decided to stay at Barcelona after being given assurances by new coach Luis Enrique that he remained an important player at the club.

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It had been reported that Alves, 31, would leave the Catalan club this summer, with Paris Saint-Germain mooted to be a likely destination for the Brazilian right-back.

That move, however, never materialised and the player arrived back for preseason training in Catalonia after a disappointing showing at the summer's World Cup for Brazil with his future still up in the air.

The issue has apparently now been cleared up with the former Sevilla player telling a news conference that after talking to Luis Enrique he was happy to remain a Barca player.

"When I was asked on my return to Barcelona about this, I left it very clear that I needed to talk with Luis Enrique and to feel that he really counted on me, because it is him I am going to work with all year," Alves said.

"I wanted to know his intention, to know what they really wanted from me. He said they were counting on me, so I am counting on him. It is about the two of us."

Alves, who was whistled by some at the Camp Nou before the recent friendly win over Club Leon, went on to say he has not always been happy with the support he received from senior club figures, while admitting his form had slipped over recent seasons.

"I did not feel valued, in a way, by the club or the fans," he said. "But I am the one responsible for all this because people get used to a level of performance, and when you drop, the people demand more.

"But I feel it could have been focused in another way. I have not felt backed or defended when things came out in the press. There were doubts about me in the board."

Alves said he was delighted Barca had signed Luis Suarez from Liverpool, as the Uruguayan's "bad" image would help take some of the heat off him.

"We need bad guys, otherwise all the burden would come for me, so the 'bad cop' share can be divided up," he said. "Luis has competitive blood, he is a great player, it is a pleasure to have him here. I hope he plays soon and we can enjoy him."


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