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Four-goal Faris dreams of AFC Cup final

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Alves expects contract renewal

Barcelona star Dani Alves says he is optimistic that he will agree a new contract with the Spanish league leaders "as soon as possible".

• Arsenal will be "nasty" against Barca
• Arsenal hope for Nasri boost
• Bendtner expects upset

Despite his status as an integral member of the team widely regarded as the best in club football, Alves' future at Camp Nou has been the subject of speculation in recent weeks as his current contract expires at the end of next season.

Manchester City were linked with the Brazil international, while Barcelona were reportedly targeting Ajax right back Gregory van der Wiel as a potential replacement should Alves leave.

However, the two-time La Liga winner says he hopes to sign a new contract following productive talks with the club's hierarchy.

"The leadership of the club are trying to find an optimal solution that would satisfy both parties. I hope that the problem will be solved as soon as possible," Alves told Sport.

Alves' value to Barcelona is demonstrated in the impressive fact that he has claimed ten assists in 20 La Liga games from right back this season.

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