The centre-back is missing a major tournament for the first time since his international career started but the ex-winger feels it is the right call
Former Spain star Luis Garcia says Spain will miss Sergio Ramos at Euro 2020 but admits it would have been risky for coach Luis Enrique to select him.
Ramos is not part of the final squad for the tournament after the 35-year-old endured an injury-ravaged season at Real Madrid.
Ex-Liverpool and Barcelona winger Garcia believes the tournament may have been too much for Ramos if he is not at his best.
What has been said?
“With Sergio Ramos, we have our doubts because he struggled in the last stages of La Liga,” he told Goal. “It’s true that he’s a leader, he’s the captain of the national team for many years and when he was needed he always stood up and proved what an amazing player he is. He gave confidence to the players near him.
“I think at this stage, you are going to need 120 per cent off every player. With the Covid-19 situation, with the travelling, there are a lot of things happening and if you arrive into the tournament and you are not in your best shape, there is always going to be a doubt.
“To bring in a player who might have an injury in the first game, or even in training, like happened with Sergio Ramos, it is a little bit risky.
“Yes, we are going to miss him, but Luis Enrique will have thought about that a lot. He is a coach who is always going to be honest with the players, who tries to find the players who are performing the best, and that is what he decided to bring in Eric Garcia, Laporte, Pau Torres and Diego Llorente.”
Will Pedri be a star for Spain?
While Ramos will miss a major tournament for the first time in his international career, Barcelona teenager Pedri is gearing up for his maiden appearance.
The 18-year-old midfielder has just four caps but Garcia has backed him to become a key player for the national team.
He added: “It is important to see the players who have experience too, like [Sergio] Busquets and Thiago [Alcantara]. They have played at the highest level, they have won tournaments, and they know how to pass that experience on to the young players.
“Pedri I think is one of the players we are all looking forward to seeing, to seeing how he develops in the next years. I think he’s an amazing player who can bring something different to the national team and to Barcelona.
“At 17 or 18 I was playing with my mates on the street, and he’s there playing in the biggest games and the biggest grounds in the world! He looks so cool, he looks like he’s been playing for 10 years at Barcelona, which is so important.
“We need to see how he develops in the coming months, years, but I think he’s one of those special players that is going to give a lot to the Spanish national team.”
Garcia was speaking as new research commissioned by Booking.com, the official Accommodation and Attractions Booking Partner of UEFA EURO 2020™, found that 84% of rival fans will miss opposition supporters from other countries this summer.