Alves thinking of Vilanova

Dani Alves admits football is of secondary importance while Barcelona coach Tito Vilanova fights a second battle against cancer.

Last Updated: 03/01/13 at 15:38 Post Comment

Dani Alves: Football of secondary importance

Dani Alves: Football of secondary importance

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Vilanova, 44, was discharged from hospital on Saturday 48 hours after undergoing an operation on a tumour on his parotid gland and he now faces six weeks of chemotherapy.

The Barca players were told that Vilanova, who also had a tumour removed from his throat in November last year, had been allowed to return home prior to their match with Real Valladolid on Saturday and they subsequently dedicated their 3-1 victory to their manager after the game.

That victory left Barca nine points clear at the top of the Primera Division standings and clear favourites to be crowned champions for the fourth time in five years, but Alves admits on-field matters do not compare to the health of their coach.

He told Brazilian newspaper O Estado de Sao Paulo: "It was a surprise and we were happy to know that he was already at home (after the operation). We're ready to help in any way he needs. Football is secondary right now. He is fighting for his life."

Regarding his side's lead at the top of the table, Alves is well aware it is already a sizeable one but has nevertheless is keen to increase it in 2013.

"We've built a considerable advantage because we've made the most of our opponents dropping points," he said.

"But it's an advantage that we need to look after, because we still have many games left. We're only at matchday 17. We must work to extend this advantage after the resumption."

Alves has been linked with a move away at the Nou Camp, with Premier League side Arsenal one of the clubs reportedly eyeing the Brazil international, but the 29-year-old insists he is not looking to leave Barca.

"I'm very happy at Barcelona," he said.

"These stories are created to destabilise us. I want to fulfil my contract and reach my goals. I have no problem in Barcelona and I'm very well."

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

Y

et again Barcelona try to convince the world that they only play the most virtuous of football. I've never seen a team so willing and able to dish out lumps but feel so self-righteous that no opposition player should ever have the audacity to tackle them.

charsmatcengma
Enrique hauls Neymar to safety

I

d love to see a United v Liverpool FA cup final. It would certainly fit the narrative. Obv I'd want the ending to be one of an O.G. and tears as he collects his runner-up medal.

GVMUFC
Gerrard Constantly Searching For That Final Hurrah

T

he FA Cup final on his birthday eh, what a lovely way to cap his time in England. I'm sure someone will be able to get him a ticket

stevenjameshyde
Gerrard Constantly Searching For That Final Hurrah

Footer 365

Eden Hazard: 'Chelsea need Diego Costa'

Eden Hazard admits Chelsea 'need' Diego Costa as he faces a three-match ban for a stamp on Emre Can on Tuesday night.

Copa del Rey: Luis Enrique says Neymar had to be substituted against Atletico Madrid to prevent injury

Luis Enrique says he had to substitute Neymar to prevent him from being injured in an ugly cup tie with Atletico.

Capital One Cup: Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino pleased to overcome challenging tie with Sheffield United

Mauricio Pochettino dedicated Tottenham's Capital One Cup semi-final triumph over Sheffield United to the fans.

Mail Box

Erm... Balotelli To QPR..?

It's an afternoon Mailbox that offers the reaction to the reaction, with a defence for Diego Costa offered, and Balotelli mooted to move to QPR. Plus a silly idea about the Mails...

'Diego Costa Is A Thug.' Sore Losers..?

There is plenty of fallout from Diego Costa's stamps of authority on Tuesday's League Cup semi-final. Plus Blatter, Rodgers' substitutions and stretching the transfer truth...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company