Man City Daily – Barcelona’s Alves could be on his way to Eastlands

In the wake of interest from Manchester City, Barcelona legend Johan Cruyff believes that the club should cash in on Brazilian right-back Dani Alves. Alves has not signed a new deal at the Nou Camp and looks set to leave. City have been long-time admirers and are repeatedly ready to test the Catalans’ reserve for a second time, following the capture of Yaya Toure in the summer. Alves’ current contract expires in 2012, and he has not signed an extension with reports suggesting he wants the club to make him the second-highest earner behind Lionel Messi.

Cruyff admits that losing Alves would be a blow but believes the club should sell him now rather than risk losing him on a free. “Barca have a wage scale that cannot be ignored,” Cruyff wrote in his El Periodico column. “Barcelona are a sensational team with or without Alves. Is it better to have him with us? Sure. However, if Manchester City’s offer is for real it may be better to sell him rather than wait for his contract to end and then he will go for free. It’s exactly the same as Toure. The coach wants Alves to stay, as he did with Toure, but what cannot be, cannot be.

City midfielder Nigel de Jong said yesterday that he would be happy to spend the rest of his career at Eastlands. The Dutch World Cup finalist has been a key player for the Blues since he arrived from Hamburg two years ago.

You never know what the future may bring, but I can’t ever see myself leaving this club,” the 26-year-old told the club’s official magazine. “City have done so much for me as a player and a person over the last two years, and now the plan is to be successful for a long time to come – so yeah, I could see myself staying here for the rest of my career.

Carlos Tevez has been left out of Argentina’s squad for the upcoming friendly against Portugal on February 9 in Switzerland, but new coach Sergio Batista does not want the Manchester City striker to be worried about his omission. Also left out of this squad are: Sergio Aguero, Martin Demichelis, Gabriel Heinze, Mario Bolatti and Andres D’Alessandro, with Batista looking to experiment.

Batista said: “I have no problems with any of them; it’s just a matter that I want to see other players. I wish to have 20 games before the Copa America, but I don’t, so I have to take each chance. I left them out for one match; it’s not that they’re out of the national team.

Batista pointed out that the upcoming Copa America was his only target at the moment, and that he did not have any problem with players that had shown loyalty to his predecessor Diego Maradona. He added: “I have a group of players who will be there, and who already know a lot since the 2008 Olympics, but I have to give matches to some to see them and test them.

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