Dani Alves eyes 2022 World Cup and wants to make history with Sao Paulo
Presented by his new side on Tuesday, the defender explained his decision to join the Brazilian giants as he eyes his future goals
Dani Alves wants to make history with Sao Paulo as the full-back reiterated his desire to play for Brazil at the 2022 World Cup.
Alves, 36, signed with the Brazilian giants until the end of 2022, returning to play in his homeland for the first time since leaving Bahia in 2002.
The defender, who was linked with several European clubs, said he wanted to make history in his time with Sao Paulo.
“I came here to Sao Paulo to work. I didn’t come to finish my career,” Alves told a news conference, having been presented by the club on Tuesday.
“I still have a lot of goals ahead, and one of them is to make history with Sao Paulo.”
Alves spent 17 trophy-laden seasons in Europe, including winning six La Liga titles and three Champions Leagues with Barcelona before claiming league crowns with Juventus and Paris Saint-Germain.
Explaining his decision to join Sao Paulo, Alves – who revealed he did not speak to Brazil coach Tite before making the move – said his switch was with the World Cup in Qatar in mind.
“I need project solidity. I need stability sportingly speaking because I have my goals ahead,” he said.
“I need to build this story knowing all the difficulties it entails – back to Brazil, everything that involves my name, everything that people are expecting from me.
“But the dreams I have are greater than any difficulty that may exist along the way. I stress again that my goal is trying to play the World Cup 2022.
“And that means being in a club that gives me that possibility, that bet for me, that believes in my professionalism and my history in football.
“It has always been a story built with much sacrifice and effort, but with much surrender and much result.”
Alves will be 39 by the time the 2022 World Cup kicks off, but for now his focus will be on helping his club climb the league table.
Sao Paulo sit 11 points back of league leaders Santos in the Brazilian top flight, though they hold a game in hand on their rivals.
They will get the chance to close that gap on Saturday as the two clubs face off in a crunch league clash.