JUVE STAR AND EX-BARCA ICON DANI ALVES REACHES CHAMPIONS LEAGUE MILESTONE

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Roberto Carlos is the only Brazilian to have made more appearances in Europe’s top competition than the full-back, while Ronaldo also makes history

Juventus defender Dani Alves will make his 100th appearance in the Champions League in Saturday’s final in Cardiff.

Alves, who turned 34 last month, has become just the second Brazilian after Roberto Carlos to play so many matches at that level.

He made his debut in the competition proper for Sevilla at the Emirates Stadium as they suffered a 3-0 defeat to Arsenal on September 9, 2007 and would turn out eight times that season for the Ramon Sanchez-Pizjuan outfit, scoring two goals and assisting three more before a knockout round loss to Fenerbahce on penalties.

It was at Barcelona, however, where he played the bulk of his Champions League football, enjoying success in the competition three times with the Camp Nou side, in 2009, 2011 and in 2015.

His form with Juventus, however, has been perhaps his best ever at Europe’s top table. In helping the Turin side into the Cardiff showpiece, he boasts three goals and four assists in 11 prior outings, and won widespread acclaim for his performance against Monaco in the first leg of the semi-final.

Alves is not alone in reaching a milestone figure. Cristiano Ronaldo is playing in his fifth final – a tally bettered only by three players in the history of the European Cup and Champions League.

Ronaldo still lies three showpieces behind AC Milan great Paolo Maldini and Real Madrid legend Paco Gento, not to mention a couple behind Alfredo Di Stefano, another to have starred for the Bernabeu side.

Luka Modric, after being named in the starting XI for Zinedine Zidane’s side, meanwhile, makes his 50th start.

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