Sergio Ramos has insisted that his rivalry with Barcelona defender Gerard Pique does not extend to international duty with Spain.
The duo have been involved in some heated El Clasico clashes in the past, and are heading towards the conclusion of the ongoing La Liga title race.
But Ramos claims that there is no animosity, and that club rivalry will be put aside for Spain’s World Cup qualifiers.
— AS English (@English_AS) March 20, 2017
“It’s the way it is between Real Madrid and Barcelona and that will not change,” he said – via AS. “Now, I will give him a hug. We have become accustomed to throwing stones, but we take it without malice and it is always healthy.
“That serves as something for you to sell. The key is the unity in the team, and that cannot be lost.”
Ramos has been instrumental as Real Madrid have established a two points lead – with a game in hand over Barcelona – at the top of La Liga.
The 30-year-old has been prolific as far as centre-backs go, with ten goals in all competitions to his name, including a late equaliser against Barcelona in December.
“I didn’t expect to score as many goals. It is the best record of my career as a goalscorer, but I don’t think too much about it,” Ramos said.
“As a defender, I am thinking more about conceding as little as possible. If I can score in important matches late on, even better.”
Spain play against Israel in their qualifying group on Friday, before a trip to France for a friendly the following Tuesday.
If you could only see one of the four mouth-watering UCL quarter-final games what would you pick?
Atlético Madrid vs Leicester City
Bayern Munich vs Real Madrid
Dortmund vs Monaco
Juventus vs Barcelona