Luka Modric admits he still misses his former Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos following the latter's departure last year, with the Croatia international revealing that the pair "still talk to each other every day" despite playing half a continent away.
Spain veteran Ramos ended his lengthy relationship with the Blancos - who he skippered to near-unparalleled club success over the past decade at home and in Europe - for Paris Saint-Germain in a free transfer last term.
While the defender has struggled to settle since his switch to France, his former club have restored themselves as Europe's premier outfit with a Champions League-led double under Carlo Ancelotti - but former Ballon d'Or winner Modric admits he still finds himself longing for his old team-mate.
What has Modric said about Ramos?
"All the departures of players with whom you share years in very successful [teams] are painful," the midfielder told Sportske. "For everyone - after nine years, Sergi was gone.
"From the first day [I arrived], he was close to me, he helped me adapt to Real Madrid, he encouraged me. He believed in my potential. We became great friends, our families got together, we spent the summers together.
"We still talk to each other every day, at least through messages. I miss hanging out with him, but that's the way things are in football."
What does Modric think about the future of Madrid?
Modric will be expected to figure prominently once more next season at Madrid, who have moved swiftly on from the failure to bring Kylian Mbappe to the club with the capture of several other impressive signings, including Aurelien Tchouameni and Antonio Rudiger.
For the Croatian, the shifting sands of transfer windows are part of the norm, and he still firmly believes that even when he has followed Ramos out of the door, they will continue to prosper, adding: "Changes are the norm of daily life even for those who, like him, have conquered everything.
"As I said before, this is Real Madrid. It has been confirmed that without all of us, it will continue along the paths of trophies. We all go through, only Real Madrid is eternal."