Rafael Benitez has rejected any chance of Sergio Ramos leaving Real Madrid for Manchester United this summer by insisting the defender is "integral" to his plans to get the club back to the top of European football.
Benitez is yet to take charge of his first match as Real Madrid match as manager since replacing Carlo Ancelotti in the summer. The Italian was sacked after failing to win a trophy last season, despite securing the club’s tenth Champions League crown just a year earlier, and with Benitez leaving Napoli to move back to Spain it appeared that a new dawn may be on the horizon in Madrid.
That belief was strengthened when club legend Iker Casillas was sold to Porto this month, but despite United making an initial offer worth around £31m for Ramos, the club have insisted that they will not be selling the 29-year-old this summer.
With Real president Florentino Perez already insisting that Ramos will not leave the club this season, Benitez has followed suit as the former Liverpool and Chelsea manager expressed his desire to keep Ramos among his squad.
"I see Sergio as an integral part of our team. He's a winner and that's what we need,” said Benitez in a press conference during the club’s pre-season tour of Australia.
"The president has already commented that he is staying with the club."
With Ramos expected to be confirmed as the club’s new captain having been deputy to Casillas last season, Benitez added that he has discussed Ramos’s future with the player himself, and credited his professional attitude despite the uncertainty over where he will be playing this season
"I have spoken to Ramos at length in the summer about his ideas, about his future,” Benitez added.
"For me, he is an enormous professional. He does everything that the team and I ask of him."
United are believed to be ready to test Real’s resolve though with a bid of £42m, although the Spanish club informed United officials that it will take a bid of €90m (£62m) if they want to sign Ramos this summer.Reuse content