Two months have now passed since the Champions League final and some Liverpool fans continue to look back in anger at what happened on that ill-fated May night in Kiev.
Things could have been very different had Sergio Ramos not been on the pitch.
It was the Spaniard whose tangle with Mohamed Salah led to Liverpool’s prolific forward being substituted midway through the first half with a dislocated shoulder.
And it was also Ramos whose collision with Loris Karius led to the Liverpool goalkeeper suffering a bout of concussion.
Karius went on to make two catastrophic mistakes, which have since cost him his first-team place at Anfield. His confidence remains in tatters after the most traumatic night of his professional career.
Ramos became public enemy number one in the eyes of Liverpool’s fans, who blamed the Spaniard winner for their team’s 3-1 defeat. When Ramos was in tears after Spain’s World Cup exit this summer, Liverpool supporters on social media couldn’t hide their glee.
If Madrid meet Liverpool in this season’s Champions League, the hostile reception awaiting the 32-year-old at Anfield will be like nothing we’ve seen before.
KLOPP GOES IN HARD ON RAMOS
Jurgen Klopp hadn’t said anything about Ramos – until now. Despite the fact two months have elapsed since the Champions League final, the Liverpool boss is still furious with the role the Spanish defender played that night – particularly regarding Salah’s injury.
“I watched that back, of course,” Klopp is quoted as saying by the Daily Mail in an explosive interview.
“Someone showed it to me immediately after the game. But if you watch it back and you are not with Real Madrid then you think it is ruthless and brutal. You don’t think, ‘Wow! Good challenge’. It was ruthless.
“I don’t think Mo would have always got injured in that situation, this time it was unlucky. But it is an experience we cannot have. I’m not sure if it is an experience we will have again. Go there and put an elbow to the goalkeeper, put their goalscorer down like a wrestler in midfield and then you win.
“That was the story. Ramos said a lot of things I didn’t like. As a person, I didn’t like his reactions. He was like, ‘Whatever! What do they want? It’s normal!’ No. It isn’t normal. If VAR is coming this is a situation where you have to look again, not to give a red card, but to say, ‘What is that?’”
He continued: “If you put all of the situations of Ramos together — and I’ve watched football since I was five years old — then you will see a lot of situations with Ramos. In the final the year before, against Juve, he was responsible for the red card for Juan Cuadrado.
“The world out there accepts that you use each weapon to win the game. People probably expect that I am the same. I am not.”
Klopp insists that his opinion about Ramos doesn’t mean he’s a bad loser, but his comments will certainly raise eyebrows with the world-class centre-back and everyone else associated with Los Blancos.
“If you write this people will say I’m weak, a bad loser or a whiner,” Klopp added. “I’m not. I accept it. You have asked me about it. It’s not like I wake up in the morning and think ‘RAMOS!’ (he jumps out his chair for effect) I’m fine with it. We were a competitor. But in a final you need to have a bit of luck and we didn’t have it. Then there was the situation with Loris.”
Klopp’s comments will further reinforce the idea in the minds of Liverpool fans that Ramos is to blame for their side’s Champions League final defeat.
It will be fascinating to now see if and how Ramos now responds.