"It's a challenge and I want to assume it," said the right-back
The big surprise in the new list of players' numbers came from Dani Alves, who chose number 6 worn by Xavi Hernández over the last years. In an interview at the newspaper Mundo Deportivo, the Brazilian explained why he chose it:
The reasons of the choice
- "I have several. The first is that I was born on May 6, 1983, and also because I had it in Sevilla."
- "I don't like to have the same number for a while. I get bored and I like to change. Furthermore, if we sum the numbers of the other jerseys (2 and 22), you get 6."
- "Obviously, I chose that for a legend of this club: Xavi."
Admiration for Xavi
- "I don't want to be compared with him because he is incomparable."
- "He has played many years here... I haven't been born here or even been trained in La Masia."
- "I really admire him. He has taught me a lot as a professional and as a person. Especially as a person, because he has lived everything in soccer so we have been able to share good (and not so good) things. We have talked a lot."
- "I talked with Xavi and this was one of the reasons that made me stay in Barcelona."
Defending the number
- "I told Xavi I didn't want anyone to take the 6 because I think I can defend it as he deserves."
- "It's about defending the number and the importance of Xavi in this club. I will do so: I want challenges and this is a big, big challenge."
- "I didn't tell him I would do so. I chose 6 and then I talk with Xavi. He said he was happy with my decision. Si if I have Xavi's blessing, I have everything."