Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Ramos ´just as hungry as before´ ahead of Atletico showdown

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 27 May 2016

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Real Madrid defender Sergio Ramos says victory in the Champions League final two years ago does not make him any less determined to triumph on Saturday.

Zinedine Zidane’s side meet city rivals Atletico Madrid at San Siro in a repeat of the 2014 showdown in Lisbon, which Madrid won 4-1 after extra-time.

Ramos headed in an equaliser in second-half stoppage time to deny Atletico victory in that encounter, before goals from Gareth Bale, Marcelo and Cristiano Ronaldo ultimately secured Madrid’s 10th European title.

And the Spain international says he is as motivated as ever to see off their old enemy and end Zidane’s first five months in charge with a trophy.

“After that experience [in Lisbon] I don’t think we need to change anything at all,” he said. “I’m very motivated and anxious to start the game and we’ll see what happens. 

“I don’t know if things are written or not but what happened, happened. I have wonderful memories and if I could make a film I would make it exactly as it happened.

“But I’m facing this one as if I’ve never been in one before. I’m just as hungry as before and just as willing to win.

“It would be silly of me to tell you what we’ve been working on! We know what Zizou is asking of us and now we have to do it. We need to suffer as a team, as we have done these past few months and we trust things will work out well for us.”

Ramos admits Atletico will be motivated by a desire for revenge, but he does not believe that Diego Simeone’s side will feel under more pressure due to that defeat at Estadio da Luz.

“I don’t think so,” he said. “When you play a final like that one, they’ll have a bad taste in their mouth when they recall that game, but you need to keep competing.

“I don’t know if they’re feeling this but the pressure exists when there’s a final, whether you’ve won the previous one or not. You need to manage it as best you can. It’s not that we want it less, we want to win again and continue adding trophies to our club.

“It’s cost them a lot to reach the final and we’ve also suffered a lot. But we’re one step from being at the very top.

“If you have one lack of concentration in the game you can lose it, but that’s in general not just against Atletico. Everyone needs their full sense because you can lose the game.

“I don’t think it will be a failure not to win the title, but it would be a lost opportunity because it’s tough to reach the Champions League final. We’ve worked hard together and would really like that reward to win the trophy.”

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