Real Madrid coach Santiago Solari has admitted that his side missed the commanding presence of Sergio Ramos in their shock 4-1 Champions League defeat to Ajax.
The Spain international and Madrid captain was absent after an accumulation of yellow cards, and he will also miss the first European match for Los Blancos next season.
“We do not want to speak badly of our players, but it is clear we missed our captain,” Solari said in his post-match interview.
“I arrived in this position at a tough moment and I will not surrender in our objective, this is a difficult season but we now must show our character and desire more than ever.
“Anyone can do well in an easy moment but it is the true greats who show their ability in the difficult times, they show their bravery and will come back stronger than before.”
Solari also refused to agree with Dani Carvajal who said that the club’s season is ‘clearly over’.
The Spanish full-back spoke after his side’s 4-1 humiliation at home in the hands of Ajax on Tuesday, which saw their first elimination from the Champions League since May 2015.
“Dani Carvajal’s comments? He spoke in the heat of the moment, he was showing his desire and we still have La Liga in our season,” Solari said.