Back at Camp Nou for a second stint, the Brazilian veteran enjoyed an action-packed evening in Sunday's thrilling 4-2 win over Atletico Madrid (stream the replay on ESPN+ in the U.S.), stealing the limelight by completing a historic hat trick (of sorts).
Barca fell behind to an early Yannick Carrasco opener only for Alves to kick off his involvement by providing the assist for a near-immediate equaliser -- the right-back floating a lofted pass across the Atleti penalty area for Jordi Alba to deftly volley home.
Dani Alves assisting Jordi Alba.— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) February 6, 2022
What year is it? pic.twitter.com/hO3FzWzhjF
Barca charged into a 3-1 lead at half-time before Alves added a fourth mere minutes after the restart, powering home a loose ball to score his first goal for the Catalan club since December 2015 (against Villanovense in the Copa del Rey). At the grand old age of 38 years and 276 days Alves also became the fourth-oldest player to score in a LaLiga match since the turn of the century.
The evergreen right-back can now also claim to be the seventh-oldest goal scorer in the entire history of the Spanish top flight, as well as the oldest player ever to score a league goal for Barcelona in their 122 years of existence.
However, Alves' historic "hat trick" was completed as his match came to an abrupt end in the 69th-minute when he was sent off for deliberately planting his studs into the calf of Carrasco as the Atleti player sprinted away from him.
The foul was picked up by VAR and Alves was shown a straight red card by referee Jesus Gil -- the Brazilian defender's first dismissal for Barca since March of 2015.
And with that, Alves became the first player to score a goal, create an assist and be sent off in a LaLiga game since at least the 2004-05 season, when Opta began recording such things.
38-year-old Dani Alves today:— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) February 6, 2022
Red Card 🔴
Are you not entertained?! pic.twitter.com/uapoVk3U1w
Discussing his red card after the game, the Barca star made a point of defending his actions, explaining to broadcasters Movistar that he didn't have much choice in the matter.
"I think it's a bit harsh. I didn't have room to put my leg down," Alves said. "I was quick to worry that I had hurt him [Carrasco]."
However, the real talking point was the outfit Alves chose to wear while addressing postmatch questions from the media, turning out in a designer patchwork jacket, shredded jeans, a pristine white cattle rancher hat and a t-shirt with a picture of a kitten drinking milk from a bowl on it.
Never change, Dani. Never change.