Wantaway Sergio Ramos ready for Premier League test with Man Utd
After a trophy-laden decade at Real Madrid, Spanish stalwart Sergio Ramos could soon be arriving on the Premier League stage this summer, after Manchester United made a bid of £28.6m for the defender’s signature.
Louis van Gaal is aiming to address his previously stuttering defence ahead of next season, where the confident Dutch boss will look for his rejuvenated Red Devils side to challenge for silverware on all fronts (5/1 with Coral for 2015/16 PL title).
Despite much scepticism from fans and pundits alike regarding Ramos’ potential switch from Madrid to Manchester, the long-serving Spaniard fits the bill perfectly, and could seamlessly slot into the Old Trafford backline.
The 29-year-old arrived at the Bernabeu 10 years ago this summer from Sevilla, where he was a successful graduate of their youth system, making his way through their B team before a senior debut in 2004.
Since his burst onto the scene in his home nation, Ramos has gone from strength to strength, improving his defensive abilities with every passing game, as well as becoming a genuine goalscoring threat, especially from set pieces.
The talented Spaniard headed home a last-gasp equaliser against bitter rivals Atletico Madrid in the 2014 Champions League final, which gave Real momentum to go on and secure European glory in extra-time, and has impressively netted 55 times for the Galacticos in total.
Having become a mainstay in the heart of the Los Blancos rear guard, even acting as vice-captain, the dominant Spain international could now be ready for a fresh challenge abroad in what is known as one of Europe’s toughest divisions.
The Premier League will undoubtedly provide Ramos with a new test as he approaches 30 years of age, but his defensive attributes are tailor made for England’s top-flight, regardless of much criticism.
Such a lack of belief that Ramos can truly succeed stems from the apparent naive idea that the Premier League is superior to La Liga or any other European top-tier but, with the physical stature and determination he possesses, there shouldn’t be any trouble adjusting.
Internationally, Ramos made his Spain debut aged just 18 and has since gone to lift two European Championships and a World Cup crown, also becoming the youngest ever player to reach 100 caps for his country along the long road of silverware success (6/1 to win Euro 2016).
Fault wise, the experienced centre back can sometimes be caught off-guard, but so can any top class defender. The key problem with Ramos, which has cast doubts over his credentials to become United’s key defensive unit, is his temperament, or lack of it.
Although, that could work to his advantage of a move to England does materialise, with his aggression coupled with a driven desire to succeed potentially giving Ramos the perfect personal platform to build upon on his arrival.
Previous fiery characters at Old Trafford have used such an intimidating presence to their benefit, with the likes of Roy Keane, Jaap Stam and more recently Argentina international Rojo doing so effectively, and Ramos could follow suit.
Gifted with plenty of pace for a defender, along with astute aerial abilities and a calmness in possession and distributing, Ramos could easily be a towering figure in the heart of van Gaal’s defence.
Alongside fellow aggressive versatile defender Marcos Rojo, both these well-equipped centre backs could form a dominant partnership for years to come, flanked by astute Dutchman Daley Blind on the left, with Everton’s Seamus Coleman possibly taking up his position at right back this summer.
Such a promising backline will be welcomed with open arms by United fans, but the likes of Chris Smalling and Phil Jones could therefore struggle further to assert themselves at such a demanding club, despite the latter penning a new long-term deal.
With Van Gaal missing out on silverware in his debut campaign at Old Trafford, Ramos’ capturing would bolster both defensive ranks and morale within the squad, ahead of what could be a season which sees the real Red Devils return to the fore (20/1 to win Champions League).