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Real Madrid vs. AC Milan in Dubai

50-50 Challenge
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By ESPN Staff

Alves urges fans to help Barca get back on track

Barcelona's big summer signing Daniel Alves has urged fans to stick with the club as they try to get back to winning ways.

The Nou Camp faithful had to endure the sight of Real Madrid lifting the Primera Liga title for a second season running last year, while Barca's barren spell continued.

The lack of any trophies since the club won the league and Champions League double in 2006 has sent the club into crisis, with president Joan Laporta facing a vote of confidence and stars Ronaldinho and Samuel Eto'o being forced to look for a transfer.

The club have tried to turn the tide with the appointment of former player Pep Guardiola as coach, and the signings of Seydou Keita, Gerard Pique, Martin Caceres and now Alves.

Upon his arrival on Tuesday, the Brazilian promised fans the players would give everything to take Barca back to the top.

'The fans need to stick with Barca,' he told Barca TV. 'The signings the club have made and the players already here will try to leave behind the year that Barca has just had and return the club to the place where it always should have been.'

Alves arrived in the Catalan capital to complete his 29.5million euro move on Tuesday afternoon, having bid an emotional farewell to his former club Sevilla.

Upon arriving in Barcelona, the 25-year-old told reporters he was keen to play his first game for the club and show that the Barca board were right to invest so heavily in him.

He said: 'It's a massive challenge in my life and in my career. I can't wait to play as soon as possible and show that the club did not make a mistake in buying me.

'I'm very happy to be able to realise this dream. A dream which is not only mine but one for many players who would love to be in my place right now.

'It's a marvellous prize for the work that I have done up to now. It's a leap from a great club to one which is the same if not better.

'It makes me very happy and satisfied to know that Barca are interested in my work, and to think that I can be a part of this new project.'

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