Barcelona midfielder Andres Iniesta plays against his squad’s rival, Real Madrid, often several times per season, domestically and sometimes abroad in the Champions League.
And knowing Sergio Ramos–one of the biggest talents circulating the European soccer transfer market–the 31-year-old can’t see an exit from the Bernabeu as realistic.
Ramos has been heavily linked to Premier League club Manchester United, a side that tried to win over Borussia Dortmund’s Mats Hummels and failed to do so.
The Red Devils switched their sights to La Liga, nonetheless, and followed up speculation from early in the transfer window with a $45 million offer for the defender.
Then, the ex-Sevilla man, who has spent 10 seasons with Los Blancos and made over 440 gameday appearances, requested to leave Madrid to find a different challenge elsewhere.
Although many signs point to a dissatisfied Ramos hitting the road, Iniesta praised the ability of his teammate on the Spanish national team and offered his view on the subject.
“I’ve always said that Sergio is one of the best centre-backs around,” he is quoted as saying in AS.
“He’s already in a great team and, to be honest, I can’t see Madrid letting him leave.”
Former Real Madrid goalie Jesus Fernandez echoed a comparable perspective.
“It’s hard to imagine [Ramos not being there],” he said. “He’s a symbol of Real Madrid, and has given the club a lot. He has lots of character and is an important part of the club.”
Getting a highly skilled goalkeeper (David De Gea) as a part of the deal provides an excellent incentive for Real to go through with this.
Real will also have the funding to replace Ramos, and his absence–though it might be noticeable at the beginning of next year–would eventually fade into obscurity if new manager Rafa Benitez can find the right combination in the back line.