The biggest surprise about Sergio Ramos’ Champions League final performance in Kiev is that anyone was surprised by it.
Real Madrid’s captain latest exhibition of s**thousery triggered fans everywhere while simultaneously ensuring his club completed an historic hat-trick of European Cups.
Did Ramos deliberately injure Mohamed Salah? Probably not.
Would he have been delighted to see the 44-goal Egyptian winger leave the pitch midway through the first half? Of course.
The incident in the 25th minute proved to be decisive.
Liverpool had enjoyed the better of the opening exchanges before Salah called for medical attention after a tangle with Ramos.
The Spanish centre-back actually completed an inch-perfect tackle on the Premier League Golden Boot winner before clinging onto his arm to ensure Salah joined him face first on the Kiev turf.
As Liverpool’s talisman left the field in floods of tears soon after, you could sense the belief drain out of remaining players.
Then there’s the elbow on poor Loris Karius.
Replays showed the Ramos left plenty on Liverpool’s error-prone keeper a couple of minutes before he rolled the ball straight into Karim Benzema’s outstretched foot for the opening goal.
Had the ref seen the incident, it would almost certainly have been a red card.
But it wasn’t.
Street smarts, roughhousing, dirty play… whatever you want to call it, Ramos does it bloody well.
Sure, he’s been shown more yellow and red cards than the vast majority of players in history, but that’s a small price to pay.
Ramos’ combative style is a key reason Real Madrid have won four out of the last five Champions Leagues.
And it’s instinctive to him.
There’s no way he would thought ‘I’m going to yank Salah’s shoulder out of its socket’ before the game kicked off.
Such pre-meditated savagery is not his remit… at least we think it isn’t.
In many ways, Ramos is like Millwall.
Nobody likes him and he doesn’t care…
Those tweets are funny, it’s a great theme.
But here’s the thing, we bet nobody finds them funnier than Ramos himself.
Because he’s not really the butt of the joke, is he?
No matter how many retweets Clive from Hertfordshire gets, Ramos’ medal haul won’t change.
When all is said and done, he’ll be remembered as a big-game player and a serial winner.
Sometimes the old adages are the best — nice guys finish last.
Dream Team World Cup has landed!
The greatest show on Earth just got that bit more exciting.
That’s because the Dream Team World Cup game is coming ahead of this summer’s tournament.
Dream Team World Cup
- Completely free to enter
- £50m budget and 20 transfers throughout the tournament
- £175k total prizepot (for UK players only)
- PRE-REGISTER FOR DREAM TEAM WORLD CUP NOW
The game officially launches on June 1 – but you can pre-register for the game now.
If you’re an existing Dream Team customer the World Cup game now appears in the app or you can enter here, but if you’re not follow these simple steps:
- Download the Dream Team app
- Create an account
- Click on the World Cup banner below in the app and follow the pre-registration instructions
From Russia with a whole lot of love.