Liverpool manager, Jurgen Klopp, has criticised Real Madrid captain, Sergio Ramos, over what he described as a “ruthless and brutal” challenge on Mohammed Salah in the Champions League final.
Both teams competed for top honours in the 2017/2018 UEFA Champions League final in May and Salah was forced off the pitch in tears the 13th minute after falling awkwardly on his shoulder following a challenge by the Real Madrid captain.
Breaking his silence since the incident occurred, Klopp said Ramos’ statement and countenance after the game showed that he felt no remorse for his actions.
He criticised Ramos for constantly repeating villain actions, noting an incident between the Spanish defender and Juventus player, Juan Cuadrado.
Klopp said, “If you watch it back and you are not with Real Madrid then you think it is ruthless and brutal,” Klopp told reporters.
“I saw the ref taking charge of big games at the World Cup and nobody really thinks about that later. But in a situation like that somebody needs to judge it better.
“If VAR is coming then it is a situation where you have to look again. Not to give a red card but to look again and say: ‘What is that?’ It was ruthless.
“I’m not sure it is an experience we will have again – go there and put an elbow to the goalkeeper, put their goalscorer down like a wrestler in midfield and then you win the game. That was the story of the game.
“Ramos said a lot of things afterwards that I didn’t like. As a person, I didn’t like the reactions of him. He was like: ‘Whatever, what do they want? It’s normal.’ No, it is not normal
“If you put all of the situations of Ramos together then you will see a lot of situations with Ramos. The year before against Juve he was responsible for the red card for [Juan] Cuadrado. Nobody talks about that afterwards.”
The German manager, who denied still feeling sore from the defeat, advocated for the expansion of the Video Assistant Referee, VAR, across major football competitions to rule on controversial decisions.
He said, “It is like we, the world out there, accepts that you use each weapon to win the game. People probably expect that I am the same. I am not.
“We are aggressive but I always use the word ‘legal’ as well. Usually, if you try something you will get punished. Someone will see it and ban you for four or five weeks. But in this example, no one.
“This ref should have had the courage to decide that game. In this situation we didn’t get it and, if you write this, people will say I am weak or a bad loser or a whiner. I am not. I accept it. It’s not like I wake up in the morning and think: ‘Ramos!’”