Real Madrid Will Not Fear Mohamed Salah in UCL Final, Says Sergio Ramos

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistMay 4, 2018

ROME, ITALY - MAY 2: Mohamed Salah of Liverpool during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final second leg match between AS Roma and Liverpool FC at Stadio Olimpico on May 2, 2018 in Rome, Italy. (Photo by Jean Catuffe/Getty Images)
Jean Catuffe/Getty Images

Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos has branded Mohamed Salah just "one of 11 players" and insisted Los Blancos will not fear the Egyptian star when they face Liverpool in the UEFA Champions League final. 

Salah, 25, has netted 43 goals for Liverpool in 2017-18, his debut season with the club, and is being tipped by many to finally break Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo's 10-year duopoly on the Ballon d'Or.

However, Ramos is adamant Real will be able to handle Liverpool's star man when they go for their third Champions League triumph on the bounce at Kiev's NSC Olimpiyskiy Stadium on May 26, per the Mirror's David Maddock:

"We have seen what Salah can do this season, but he will just be one of eleven players we face against Liverpool. Throughout my career, I have faced the best forward players in the world—many of them who are considered among the greatest ever. For me, there is never a fear. A respect, yes, but never a fear."

MADRID, SPAIN - MAY 01: Sergio Ramos of Real Madrid on the ground during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final Second Leg match between Real Madrid and Bayern Muenchen at the Bernabeu on May 1, 2018 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by TF-Images/Getty Images)
TF-Images/Getty Images

Barring injury, the final in Ukraine should see the four top scorers from this year's competition on the pitch at the same time.

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Liverpool duo Salah and Roberto Firmino have netted 10 goals, their team-mate Sadio Mane is on nine, and Real's Ronaldo has returned 15 in 12 appearances despite not scoring in either semi-final leg against Bayern Munich.

The widely held prediction given Real and Liverpool's potent attacking forces, and their relative weaknesses in defence, is that the 2017-18 Champions League final will be a goal-filled affair.

As noted by tactics expert Jonathan Wilson on the Guardian: "Either side could score six in Kiev; both may."

The showpiece is likely to be billed as Ronaldo vs. Salah, and either could be the decisive player on the pitch.

However, just as crucial could be the fact that Real Madrid's players have all been in this position before, while Liverpool's have not.

Los Blancos have won three of the last four finals and are ruthless when it comes to Champions League glory.

They face a huge test against a Liverpool side who have arguably played the best football in this year's tournament.

But, as Ramos said, they are unlikely to fear Salah and his team-mates when they come face to face later this month.