Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane has hailed Sergio Ramos as “the most symbolic Spanish player” ahead of Sunday’s rematch against Sevilla.
Sevilla confirmed on Friday that they had reported Ramos to La Liga for his cupped-ear celebration after he scored a Panenka penalty in Madrid’s dramatic Copa del Rey draw at Sanchez Pizjuan, but Zidane made it clear he sided with his captain as he branded the insults of the Nervionenses fans “annoying”.
“It’s going to be another difficult match, like the other night, although this one will be even more so,” the Coach said at a Press conference.
“Ramos? First and foremost, Ramos is our captain and an example for all of us. He’s surely the most symbolic Spanish player, but [the controversy] is in the past now.
“Us and Sevilla have asked for the players to be shown maximum respect. The case is closed and we’re expecting a great game.
“Going for the draw? No, we’re going to play our game and it’ll be the top team against the second.
“They’ll make it difficult like they did the other night and they want to win the game like we do.
“We’re ready to play, but I don’t want a draw before the game.
“We’re going to fight to have the ball. They’re going to make it difficult for us and we’ll suffer, but so will they.
“We’ll do everything we possibly can, we’re in a good run of form and we want to go as we’ve always gone, putting everything we have on the pitch.
“After that, whatever happens, happens. What’s important is that we give our all.
“Ronaldo? He’s feeling very good, he’s worked hard and rested on Thursday, he’s very good.
“The players’ attitude after the insults? Sergio [Ramos] will be with us. I’d say to my players that they always have to play, although things like this will unfortunately always happen.
“If you have 100,000 fans at a stadium, you can’t change some of them. I’ll tell my players to play through it, although of course it’s annoying.
“Asensio? He’s very good, he proved it the other night. He’s playing well, with character.
“He knows where he is, his role is difficult sometimes [but we have faith in him] because he’s very good.
“He knows [how to play his role] perfectly well and when he plays he does well, he’s been very good for us. We’ll see if he plays tomorrow.”