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Varane: “I make Ramos better and he makes me better”

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The centre-back spoke to the media ahead of the Inter match.

Borussia Moenchengladbach v Real Madrid: Group B - UEFA Champions League Photo by Mario Hommes/DeFodi Images via Getty Images

Ahead of Real Madrid’s huge Champions League clash against Inter, Raphaël Varane spoke to the media and previewed the match against the Italian side. In the press conference, he said: “This is a difficult match and we’re playing a strong opponent. We have to win and we’re motivated. We have to give our all. We like the matches with pressure. This is a different situation to what we’re used to. We have to view this like a direct elimination match. We have the squad to take on any challenge.”

Considering Real Madrid have lost seven of their past eight Champions League fixtures for which Sergio Ramos was missing, Varane was asked about this and asked about Ramos’ impact on the defence. He said: “As a defender I always feel more comfortable when we defend with less space and when we’re more compact. When we don’t defend as well, I have to make more complicated decisions at the back. It’s true that the last few results without Sergio in the Champions League haven’t been good. I think the character he has is very good for the team. But, it’s a matter for everyone. My qualities complement Sergio’s very well. I think I make him better and he makes me better.”

One of the matches where Real Madrid were without Ramos was the second leg away at Manchester City last season and Varane made two major errors and he once again reflected on that. He stated: “That’s in the past and you have to learn from what happens in the past to get better. We can’t look back when we win and that’s also true when things go badly.”

With Éder Militão testing positive for COVID-19, Real Madrid have even fewer players available in defence, with Varane, Ramos, Marcelo and Ferland Mendy the only four senior defenders able to be selected right now. On that, Varane said: “We’ve been preparing well for the matches every three days and we don’t think about injuries. It’s true that many players have had injuries across Europe because of the rhythm of the matches, but it is what it is. We can’t think about rest or injuries. We have to think about winning.”