One team appears to be in pole position to sign Sergio Ramos after Real Madrid confirmed the veteran centre-back will leave the club.
The 35-year-old, who has been with Madrid since 2005, will depart at the end of his contract on June 30. The LaLiga club announced on Wednesday evening that they will host a farewell to the defender on Thursday, followed by a press conference.
A short statement on the club website read: “Real Madrid C. F. announces that tomorrow, Thursday 17 June, at 12:30pm, an institutional act of tribute and farewell to our captain Sergio Ramos will be held, which will be attended by our president Florentino Perez.
“Sergio Ramos will then appear before the media in a virtual press conference.”
And the battle to sign the defender has already begun. In fact it’s been going on behind the scenes for “a long time”.
Manchester United, Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain are all in the running for the signature of the Madrid icon, according to AS.
The Spanish daily insist that “the team that has taken the most strength in recent weeks has been Manchester City”.
Pep Guardiola apparently fancies the idea of the experienced Ramos coming on board alongside John Stones, Ruben Dias, Nathan Ake and Aymeric Laporte.
— Real Madrid C.F. 🇬🇧🇺🇸 (@realmadriden) June 16, 2021
The source claims “the Ramos environment has been in contact with City leaders for a long time”.
United are also said to be interested as they look for an experienced partner for Harry Maguire.
€12m a year salary
PSG are also keen on Ramos, who arrived at the Bernabeu 16 years ago following a switch from Sevilla and went on to have a glittering career.
He won five La Liga titles, four Champions League crowns as well as the Copa Del Rey twice.
It was during his time in the Spanish capital that he also won the 2010 World Cup with Spain. He also won back-to-back European Championships in 2008 and 2012.
Injuries took their toll in the most recent campaign, though, as he played just 21 times as Madrid lost out in the title race to city rivals Atletico while also going out at the semi-final stage of the Champions League.
Ramos will be a free agent, but just where he will end up at this stage is unclear.
But whoever does land the player will have to pay him around €12million a year or around €230,000 a week before tax.