Maldini: Sergio Ramos can be the best
Paolo Maldini believes Sergio Ramos can become the undisputed best defender in the world if the Real Madrid man can cut out his occasional lapses in concentration.
Ramos has established himself as first-choice centre-back for Madrid and Spain in recent seasons, winning every domestic trophy for his club and claiming the 2010 World Cup and the European Championships of 2008 and 2012 with La Roja.
However, he remains prone to the odd mistake -- the most recent of which came on Tuesday when he played Eduardo Vargas onside for Chile’s opening goal in Spain’s 2-2 friendly draw. He also has a poor disciplinary record and has become the most sent-off player in Madrid’s history, with 16 red cards and over 100 yellows in eight seasons at the Bernabeu.
Maldini told Marca that Ramos had everything to be the best centre-back around, if he could just keep his head at all times.
“Sergio Ramos has everything to become the best defender in the world, if he is not already,” the Italy and AC Milan legend said. “He is very close, together with Thiago Silva, but he must perfect some things to be the undisputed number one.
“He must be ambitious and work more in his head, because on the physical and technical sides he already has plenty. I am sure that Carlo Ancelotti will be a big help for him in putting the final touches to this. He can play in various positions at the back, centre-half and full-back, but to be the best centre-half he must always play a perfect game. Always.”
Maldini believes new Madrid coach Ancelotti -- who was the former defender’s team-mate and then coach at Milan -- is unlikely to try to change much at the Bernabeu but is convinced he will win trophies while playing good football.
“Carlo has always triumphed everywhere he has gone,” he said. “Unlike at PSG, he does not now have to change the squad’s mentality, to start from zero with his philosophy. At Madrid that is all already there -- the only thing he must do is win.
“There will not be much patience, in the same way as at Milan. I am sure he knows that himself. He knows the culture of a winning team, which always looks for success while playing well. He has shown that in England, Italy and France, something that not all coaches can say. There is no team that Carlo is not capable of commanding.”