Reports linking Manchester United with a move for Real Madrid centre-half Sergio Ramos must rank as the close season’s most box office transfer rumour to date.
The Spanish international is 3/1 to be a United player by the close of the transfer window, while it’s 1/5 that he remains on the books at Santiago Bernabeu.
However, the Independent understand the player to be demoralised over the fact that his Los Blancos contract has been allowed to run down into its final two years.
Moreover, the player supposedly feels that recent reports in Spain that he has been offered to Barcelona have not been robustly refuted by Real, with his standing among the club’s supporters suffering as a result.
Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City are also interested in stabling the 29-year-old, but the Red Devils appear to be his favoured option at this stage.
Yet, perhaps more surprising than the fact that either Madrid or the Merengues stalwart are considering going their separate ways is Ramos’ current weekly ball-park wage.
Spanish paper AS suggest that part of the Spaniard’s allure to his suitors is the fact he ‘is available on a wage of around €6million a season – roughly £80,000-a-week.’
The Independent have subsequently reported that the centre-half believes he is ‘entitled to a €10m-a-year (£7.1m) deal – which equates to around £140,000 a week’.
Either way, a not insubstantial group of Europe’s best-thought of centre-halves, PSG pair David Luiz and Thiago Silva among them, earn more even than the second amount.
As such, it’s shocking that a player whose silverware stature outranks either is on such a comparatively modest wage.
Furthermore, it highlights the disparity in pay between attacking and defensive stars, with forwards such as Theo Walcott bringing home between £90,000 and £100,000 a week as per varying reports on the worth of his last contract.
Ramos can legitimately claim to be one of a handful of elite centre-halves on the planet, whereas Walcott is someway below the same strata of wide-forwards.