Sergio Ramos is the ultimate master of football’s dark arts.
The Real Madrid and Spain defender has been sent off more times than any other player in La Liga history (24 at the time of writing) and is always involved in some form of controversy every match.
But, on the flip side, he’s also a world-class performer and a genuine leader. You don’t make almost 600 appearances for Real Madrid, plus a further 161 for Spain, unless you’re a top-drawer player.
Ramos is widely regarded as one of the world’s best defenders - and rightly so - although Liverpool’s Croatian defender Dejan Lovren recently raised eyebrows by claiming the Spaniard is overrated.
“If you look, Ramos has many more mistakes than me,” Lovren commented. “But he plays for Real Madrid, when you do a mistake you win 5-1 or 5-2, nobody cares.”
Lovren, who insisted that he’s one of the world’s best defenders after Croatia reached the World Cup final in Russia, caused a further stir earlier this week by taking another pop at Ramos following his national team’s 3-2 victory over Spain in the UEFA Nations League.
Not only did he celebrate his elbow on Ramos during the match, but he also described the Madrid star and his Spanish teammates as a “bunch of p***ies” - which was nice of him.
Ramos has remained fairly tight-lipped about Lovren - simply telling reporters that he’s not interested in responding to players who want to make headlines - although his latest Instagram activity shows exactly what he thinks about the Liverpool centre-back.
Ramos has been caught liking the following photo, which shows Lovren crying alongside the Bernabeu favourite celebrating last season’s Champions League triumph over the Reds.
He was also spotted liking two other similar Instagram posts…
You’re a bad man, Sergio.
In fairness, though, Ramos can be forgiven for feeling slightly irritated by Lovren.
Lovren instigated this ‘spat’ by taking an unnecessary pop at Ramos, and then embarrassed himself with that Instagram live video.
You have to ask why he’s doing this?
One explanation is that Lovren is playing to the gallery, trying to please Liverpool supporters who will never forgive Ramos for the role he played in Mohamed Salah’s injury during last season’s Champions League final.
Lovren is also close friends with Salah, so you have to wonder whether he’s still bitter about everything that happened in Kiev last May.