Even as Juventus pulled off a defensive master class at Camp Nou to advance to the Champions League semi-finals, former Barcelona player Dani Alves earned praise for two remarkable sporting gesture on his return both before and after the game.

Juventus beat Barcelona 3-0 on aggregate on Wednesday after holding them to a goalless draw in the second leg of the quarter-final, not letting the trio of ‘MSN’ convert a chance.

Barcelona had several shots in the course of the game, but failed to find the net with even Lionel Messi missing a free kick. By the end of the match, Neymar was seen in tears as the striker buried his face inside his jersey. Dani Alves, the Brazilian’s national teammate, was then seen consoling the striker, a gesture hailed by many.

"Te amo irmão"

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On being asked what he told Neymar, Alves answered with some more sporting advice, “I told him that this is football, that’s just the way it is.”

“Everyone defended their club colours and Neymar needn’t be sad. It’s just a defeat and he has to move on. I told him that that’s life – we had to face each other,” Alves explained to beIN Sport.

The former Barcelona defender revealed that he wasn’t too keen on playing against his former club. “I already told him that I didn’t want to take on Barcelona for all that we had gone through together, but that in these situations you have to leave feelings aside,” Alves said.

“I did not want to measure myself just on this, we have experienced these moments together and now we experience them apart so it is hard. We have to focus on our jobs, but the feeling is there,” he added.

Earlier, Alves missed the start of the match as he was seen playfully greeting his former club officials and coaches. He went to the Barcelona bench and was busy goofing around with them even as the referee blew the kickoff whistle. He then hurried back, missing the first few seconds of the match.

Alves is a fan favourite at camp Nou, having played there for eight seasons between 2008 and 2016, making close to 400 appearances and winning the Champions League thrice.