Legendary Real Madrid skipper Ramos to quit club

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Sergio Ramos (Getty Images)
Sergio Ramos (Getty Images)

Legendary Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos is to quit the club after 16 trophy-laden seasons, the La Liga giants announced Wednesday.

Real said there would be an "act of tribute and farewell" to Ramos on Thursday in the presence of club president Florentino Perez.

Ramos, 35, has struggled with injuries this season and has played just five times since the start of the year.

His 21 appearances for Real Madrid in all competitions is his lowest in 16 seasons playing for the capital club. In all he played 671 games for Real, scoring 101 goals.

Ramos joined Madrid from Sevilla in 2005, the sole Spaniard brought in during Perez's first stint as president.

He went on to become one of the club's most successful ever players, having won five La Liga titles, four Champions Leagues and two Copas del Rey.

This season, however, Ramos has missed games after catching Covid-19 and also because of injuries to his right thigh, his left calf and, most recently, his left hamstring.

He was in Madrid's squad for the final game of the La Liga season against Villarreal but did not play.

According to Spanish media, Real and Ramos have not been able to find agreement on a possible extension of his contract which will expire on June 30.

The club wanted to offer him a one-year deal with a 10% cut in salary in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, while Ramos wanted a two-season extension, press reported.

The veteran defender was also omitted from the Spain squad for the ongoing Euro 2020.

The absence of Ramos meant there is not a single Madrid player in the Spain squad.

Ramos is the most capped player in the history of the Spanish national team, having played 180 games. With 23 goals, he is also Spain's eighth-highest all-time goalscorer.

He represented Spain at four World Cups and three European Championships. He was a key member of the squads that won the 2010 World Cup and the European Championships in 2008 and 2012.

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