Dani Alves: This is why Barcelona sold Sanchez

Matt Stead

Dani Alves says Barcelona sold Alexis Sanchez because he did not have an “understanding” of their style of play.

Sanchez enjoyed three successful years at the Nou Camp, winning six trophies after joining from Serie A side Udinese in 2011.

The Chilean left Barcelona in summer 2014 to join Arsenal, where he has scored 36 goals in 80 games, but has just an FA Cup and a Community Shield to show for his efforts.

Discussing why Sanchez failed to hold down a regular spot at Barcelona and was subsequently sold to the Gunners, Alves explained that the forward did not fully acclimatise to the demanded style of play.

“Alexis didn’t fail at Barcelona but it’s hard to play here because you have to understand the playing idea,” Alves told the Daily Mail.

“He’s a great player and I always knew that he would be a success when he left, especially if he went somewhere he would be the protagonist. He’s the kind of player who needs that.

“In the end, you are going to have the protagonism anyway but you have to understand that, at Barcelona, it’s not enough just to be a great player.

“You need to have a great understanding of the way Barcelona play and, if you do, then you will have a long career here.

“Those that come and go, that doesn’t mean they are bad players. They go somewhere else and they enjoy it because they are beasts, but at Barcelona it’s not enough just to be a beast of a player.”