Manchester United have been given fresh hope of signing Barcelona defender Dani Alves in the summer after his agent Dinorah Santa confirmed his client is open to the idea of leaving Camp Nou at the end of the season.
In an interview with Spanish newspaper Sport, the Brazil international's representative fuelled speculation of a Bosman free departure after admitting that all offers will be considered upon the completion of the 2014/15 campaign.
Santa also insisted that Barca's transfer ban - which runs until January 2016 - will have no bearing whatsoever on the player's future as Alves runs down the final six months of his current contract.
"Dani has not yet made a decision whether he wants to stay at Barcelona or leave the club.," she explained. "He's open to both options.
"The fact that Barcelona cannot sign any one until January 2016 does not affect our decision. That's something the club will have to deal with. If Dani receives an offer, or maybe even offers from two or three clubs, we will sit down and consider it."
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Alves has been with the club since signing from Sevilla in the summer of 2008, making well over 300 senior appearances for Barcelona, during which time he's won four La Liga titles and two Champions League crowns.
And, the 31-year-old is showing no signs of slowing down as his marauding performances down the right flank continue to earn widespread praise from his footballing peers, which presumably is what has attracted admiring glances from Louis van Gaal over at Old Trafford.
According to The Express, the Red Devils boss is on the lookout for a potential replacement for Rafael, who has been unconvincing so far this season when fit enough to feature in the side.
Antonio Valencia has been deployed at right wing-back in Van Gaal's preferred 3-5-2- formation for much of the campaign, but Alves would provide Manchester United with a world-class alternative, even if it's only as a short-term solution.
"He is the best right back in the world, even if he did not make the World XI this year" - Dani Alves agent
"Dani Alves has always been loyal to the club throughout his career," added Santa, who doubles up as the South American star's wife, as well as his agent. "He does not have any preference now.
"The only certainty he has now is that he will give his all for the team until June. We'll then see what happens.
"He is the best right back in the world, even if he did not make the World XI this year. He wants to be at a club where he feels comfortable. He does not have a bad feeling about Barcelona, but at the moment there has not been an offer for a contract renewal."