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"If he wants he can take it" - Barcelona superstar ready to give up jersey number for Pedri next season

Pedri wants Dani Alves' No. 8 shirt
Pedri wants Dani Alves' No. 8 shirt
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Dakir Mohammed Thanveer

Barcelona superstar Dani Alves has revealed that he is prepared to hand the No. 8 shirt to Blaugrana team-mate Pedri next season.

Five years following his Camp Nou exit, Alves returned to Barcelona on a free transfer last November. While the Brazilian mostly wore the No. 2 shirt during his first stint with the Catalans, the number was already taken by Sergino Dest when he was registered in January.

Alves thus opted for the No. 8 shirt upon returning to the side mid-season. The kit has a huge history at Barcelona as it was once worn by club legend Andres Iniesta during his time at Camp Nou.

While Alves currently wears the No. 8 kit, Pedri recently expressed his desire to don the shirt in an interview with Cadena Cope [via Barca Universal]. The 19-year-old views Iniesta as his idol and is keen to wear the same shirt as the former Barcelona midfielder.

The right-back has now revealed that he has already spoken to Blaugrana officials about handing the No. 8 shirt to Pedri. Alves is prepared to offer the kit to the teenager even if he signs a contract extension with the club. He told Mundo Deportivo [via Barca Universal]:

“I read in an interview that he [Pedri] said he liked the number 8 and I spoke to the people at the club, that next season if he wants it he can take it, if I stay, of course. If I leave, he can take it straight away.”
🎙| Dani Alves: “I’ve already told the club, if Pedri wants the No. 8 next season, it’s his.” #fcblive

Alves, though, stressed the need for Pedri to defend the kit if he is to get the No. 8 shirt next season. He said:

“If he wants it, it’s his, but there is only one mission, we have to defend it well, because this shirt has been worn by great people, very special people, especially for me, like Iniesta or Hristo [Stoichkov] they are people who have done a lot for this club."
“The numbers have to be defended and respected as they should be, they have a history behind them, for those who have honored this club."

Pedri, who has established himself as a regular starter for Barcelona since making his debut in 2020, has been likened to Iniesta by many. The teenager is viewed as the present and future of the club and could thus be worthy of wearing the No. 8 shirt soon.

The Spain international has made 72 appearances across all competitions for the Blaugrana, scoring eight and assisting seven goals in the process. He has a contract with the club until 2026.


Alves' Barcelona future is uncertain

Alves joined the Catalans on a deal until the end of the season in January. The Brazilian has since played 10 matches for the club, scoring one goal and providing three assists.

Dani Alves contract extension could be discussed soon, Barça manager Xavi confirms: "I hope he will continue with us - Dani Alves can be considered a role model. His impact for our team is amazing, he helps us a lot". 📑🇧🇷 #FCB https://t.co/c85z0GXHys

As things stand, the 38-year-old will leave Camp Nou at the end of the season. However, there have been suggestions that Alves could extend his stay with Xavi's side further, as per SPORT [via Football Espana].

The right-back, though, is yet to put pen to paper on a new deal. It thus remains to be seen if he will be at Barcelona next season.


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Edited by Dakir Mohammed Thanveer
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