Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk insists Real Madrid rival Sergio Ramos is not the world’s best centre-back. “Raphael Varane is my favourite.”
Van Dijk was part of the Liverpool side who lost 3-1 to Real Madrid in last season’s Champions League Final, but the Dutchman made it clear he was not fond of Ramos’ histrionics, among them his collision with Mohamed Salah, which injured the winger and left him in tears.
“Ramos isn’t the best centre-back in the world,” the stopper told De Telegraaf.
“He’s a great player and I respect him for what he’s won in his career, but he’s not my type.
“Raphael Varane is my favourite. He’s an excellent defender, young and he has already won a lot.
“I won’t defend Sergio Ramos. What’s more, I try to avoid many of the situations he gets himself into.
“I don’t know he went out to hurt Salah, but it’s true that something changed in the mentality of Real Madrid when he got injured.
“Suddenly Marcelo, Benzema and Ronaldo started to besiege our young full-back [Trent] Alexander-Arnold as it left our entire right side free.
“With Salah on the field they wouldn’t have dared do that. Sometimes you think about that night... The game would’ve gone differently.
“I hope to play in another Final and win it. If not, that night in Kiev will hurt forever.”
Van Dijk’s Reds teammate Dejan Lovren also had a few choice words for Ramos, goading him on social media after Croatia’s 3-2 win against Spain.