'A stain on my reputation' - Ramos defends himself over doping allegations

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The Real Madrid captain insists that there is no substance to allegations that he failed a doping test prior to the 2017 Champions League final

Sergio Ramos says that allegations suggesting he failed a doping test before the 2017 Champions League final are an "attempt to stain my image and professional reputation".

A report by Football Leaks, published by Der Spiegel on Friday, alleges that a urine sample given by the defender prior to the final against Juventus subsequently tested positive for dexamethasone, a banned substance. 

Despite this positive test, which was discovered a month after the game in Cardiff, Wales, UEFA allegedly took no action against Real Madrid or Ramos himself. Real won the game 4-1.

And the defender has now issued a strong rebuttal of the allegations, insisting that they are baseless and without substance.

Speaking after Real Madrid lost 3-0 to Eibar on Saturday, he said: “That is a very difficult issue, complicated. I must come out and defend myself, with my legal team, against these allegations. I have been through 250 or 300 doping tests over my career, and never failed one, there has never been any irregularity.

"We know the type of publication this is. They threatened us with the news a month and a half ago. When you know the truth, you are not afraid of lies. It is an attempt to stain my image and my professional reputation."

A public statement released by the defender on Saturday added: "In relation to the information published about me across a number of different media outlets, I would like to clarify the following: I am vehemently opposed to doping. I have never participated, nor will I ever participate in, nor have I consented to, nor will I ever consent to, any form of doping.

 

 

"The two specific cases referred to are explained as follows. 1. Malaga, April 2018: When the match ended, I was requested to complete an anti-doping test. Given the time pressures on the team's return journey, the official allowed me to shower, remaining in his presence at all times, before completing the test which I passed, as in all cases.

"2. Cardiff, June 2017: I received a standard medical treatment administered by the club's medical professionals. The matter was clarified and resolved formally and in writing between the organisations.

"Over the course of my long sporting career I have submitted to, and passed satisfactorily, an infinite number of anti-doping tests. Neither in this case, as UEFA, WADA and Real Madrid have already stated, nor any other time in the past, have I breached anti-doping regulations.

"With respect to the right to information, I must also uphold my right to honour. My legal team will consider taking further action in those cases which misrepresent the truth and therefore undermine my reputation and violate my rights."

Real released their own statement on Friday, maintaining their captain's innocence.

"In relation to the information published by Der Spiegel referring to our captain Sergio Ramos, the club states the following:

"Sergio Ramos has never breached anti-doping control regulations.

"UEFA requested timely information and closed the matter immediately, as is usual in these cases, after verification by the experts from the World Anti-Doping Agency, AMA, and of UEFA itself.

"Regarding the rest of the content of the aforementioned publication, the club will not address evidence of such an insubstantial nature."

Ramos could not help his side to a victory on Saturday, as goals from Gonzalo Escalante, Sergi Enrich and Kike took Eibar to a historic victory.

Real are now sixth in La Liga, four points behind leaders Barcelona.

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