Luka Modric has described Sergio Ramos as a “phenomenon” and says the Real Madrid captain is the best defender in the world.
Ramos led Madrid to his fifth LaLiga title this season, scoring 11 times in the top flight – a record for a defender in the 21st century.
The 34-year-old has won 22 trophies with Los Blancos since joining from Sevilla in 2005 and remains integral to Zinedine Zidane’s plans, with many suggesting he could have been in the running for the Ballon d’Or this year before the 2020 award was cancelled.
Modric, who has become a good friend of Ramos since moving to the Spanish capital in 2012, says there can be no doubting his quality.
“My brother Sergio is a phenomenon,” he told Sportske Novosti. “And I’m not just saying that because in eight years we’ve created a really special relationship, we hang out as families, go on holiday together, or because we’ve had fantastic footballing experiences and successes together.
“Ramos is a 34-year-old rock, a top-level competitor, and when you watch him working on himself, it’s clear how dedicated he is and how hungry he is for success. He’s a team leader and the best defender in the world.”
Madrid’s title triumph was also inspired by the form of Karim Benzema, whose 21 goals earned his side 16 points in the title race.
Modric believes Benzema is now starting to get the recognition he deserves.
“Now, everyone has finally realised what we players have known for a long time,” he said. “Benzema is a top striker who is a pleasure to play with. His understanding of the game, movement, disrupting the balance of the opposition defence, is something special.
“Benzema has always done a great job for the team and I am just glad that he has now experienced a general standing ovation and great satisfaction from people recognising his class.”
Madrid trailed Barca at the top of the table when LaLiga was suspended in March due to the coronavirus pandemic, but a run of 10 wins in a row and a draw with Leganes on the final day saw them finish five points clear.
Modric felt there were signs when the team returned to training that they had a good chance of overhauling Barca.
“I’ve already won 16 trophies at Real, four Champions Leagues, but this LaLiga title made me especially happy,” he added.
“We definitely should have had more domestic titles because we threw away some championships in a very clumsy way.