Sergio Ramos said Eden Hazard’s arrival at Real Madrid could herald a new era for the club, while insisting the recent speculation over his own future had not affected his morale.
Hazard completed his transfer from Chelsea on Friday in a deal that could be worth €140million and Ramos indicated he feels the Belgium international can help Madrid to challenge for LaLiga in 2019-20.
Zinedine Zidane’s men lost three of their last four LaLiga games of the 2018-19 season as they finished third, 19 points behind winners Barcelona, but Madrid supporters will hope the marquee signing of Hazard finally fills the gap left by Cristiano Ronaldo when he left Santiago Bernabeu before the season commenced.
Ramos expressed his satisfaction at the 28-year-old’s arrival, telling reporters: “I’m happy. I think it’s a great signing. He’s one of the top players in the world.
“It’s good to reinforce the squad with those types of players that can define an era.”
— Real Madrid C.F. (@realmadriden) June 7, 2019
Ramos explained his decision to appear at a news conference at which he announced his desire to stay at Madrid until he retires, saying he wanted to end media reports linking him with a possible move to the Chinese Super League.
The 33-year-old is currently on international duty with Spain and scored in their 4-1 Euro 2020 qualifying victory over the Faroe Islands on Friday.
Ahead of Monday’s clash with Sweden, Ramos quelled the idea that linking up with Spain came as a relief after a torrid season at Madrid, saying: “I had to go out and give the press conference because I thought it was the best thing for everyone, the important thing was to turn the page and end all the speculation.
“I am happy where I am. I’m very happy in Madrid and meeting up with the national team is not a relief.
“It is something you take pride in. I am very excited about both the national team and Madrid.
“I play each game like it’s my last.”
Ramos described assistant coach Robert Moreno as “very capable” after he took Luis Enrique’s place in the dugout, the head coach still absent due to a family emergency.
Moreno was unsure whether Luis Enrique would return for the Sweden game, saying: “There is no news, and we are taking it a day at a time.
“It is likely tomorrow he will not be there. I hope I’m wrong. We hope he can be in the next one, in September [away at Romania on September 5]. But that is going to depend on his personal situation.
“We are a pretty united staff. We have Luis, even if it’s by phone.”
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