Santiago Solari has hailed Sergio Ramos ahead of the Real Madrid captain making his 600th appearance for the club.
Ramos will reach the landmark in the Champions League on Wednesday if he is selected for the first leg of Madrid’s last-16 tie away to Ajax.
The Spain international has led Madrid to three consecutive continental crowns and has hit 11 goals in all competitions this season after inheriting penalty duties from Cristiano Ronaldo.
“Playing 600 games for Real Madrid is not easy,” Solari told a news conference when asked about Ramos’ achievement.
“This historic Real Madrid has the stamp of his character so we hope he can play many more games for Real Madrid.”
No era solo un partido.
No eran solo tres puntos.
No era solo un rival.
¡El derbi para el @realmadrid!
…y otro más a la cazuela
— Sergio Ramos (@SergioRamos) February 9, 2019
Ramos’ deputy Marcelo has been linked with a move to Juventus after losing his place to 22-year-old left-back Sergio Reguilon.
Marcelo has told Esporte Interativo he will leave if Madrid do not want him, but Solari denied being dissatisfied with the Brazil international.
“Marcelo is great – he’s our vice-captain and an emblem of the club,” Solari added.
“He has always put the club first and he is training well, like all the other players. Like I said, he’s great and we all like him. He works hard in every training session.”
— Real Madrid C.F. (@realmadriden) February 12, 2019
Madrid are unbeaten in seven games in all competitions while Ajax are stumbling, losing two of their past three games including a 6-2 Eredivisie thrashing at Feyenoord.
“That’s what this profession is like, in football you have one game and another. Then when you lose it’s terrible, when you win it’s fine,” Solari continued.
“Day to day, on the inside, we want to compete – and on the next day too. Tomorrow is very important for this competition and this is where we focus. Other things, we don’t pay a lot of attention to it as managers and players and it’s right to be like this.
“I don’t think it’s a bad period for them, I don’t agree. I think they are having a good season. I’ve seen a lot of games and they play well, construct the play well and they have great players. This is football. There is always an opponent and you have to respect them all, just like the teams Ajax have played.
“I hope we play a game with a serious performance as we did three days ago, that’s my maximum hope. Football is day to day work. All we have to live for is the game tomorrow.”
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