Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos failed a doping test after the Champions League Final against Juventus, but was not punished, according to Football Leaks.
The defender tested positive for a banned substance following the 4-1 Final result on June 3, 2017.
It was, according to Der Spiegel, L’Espresso and other sources in the Football Leaks group of media sources, not the first time that Real Madrid had problems with doping tests.
The report suggests UEFA accepted an ‘apology’ and explanation from the club as justification for the failed test and took no further action.
Ramos tested positive for Dexametasone, which can be used as long as UEFA are informed ahead of time.
Real Madrid instead told UEFA that he had been given Celestone Chronodose, and the chief medic took full responsibility for the ‘error.’
Dexametasone is a cortisone preparation that has an anti-inflammatory effect in addition to relieving pain. It also increases cognition and concentration and can have a euphoric effect. And it is on the list kept by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) of substances that are prohibited in competition.
No action was taken, nor was the failed test made public and it remains under lock and key with UEFA to this day.
Sergio Ramos had irregularities around another doping test in April 2018 after Real Madrid’s 2-1 Liga victory away to Malaga, claims the report in Der Spiegel and L’Espresso.
Despite being told repeatedly he could not shower before the test, Ramos went ahead and had his shower, which under the Spanish rules is a violation of their anti-doping laws.
Despite facing possible four-year bans for both player and team doctor, Ramos and Real Madrid declined to respond to the accusations in writing.
The Spanish anti-doping agency took over five months to send Real Madrid official notification of the accusations against Sergio Ramos.
The problem, according to the Football Leaks report, is that another issue arose in February 2017.
A surprise doping test at the Real Madrid training ground sparked tension among the squad and eventually the players only went ahead with the tests when performed by the club medical staff.
In particular, Cristiano Ronaldo was irritated and complained when the tester had to insert the needle twice to find a vein.
Although the rules state that a player can have a needle inserted three times before finding a vein, after Ronaldo and Toni Kroos, the other eight players had blood tests taken by the Real Madrid medical staff instead.
This is against the rules, yet UEFA accepted the results, as Real insisted the anti-doping staff sent were not ‘professional’ enough.
“ The UEFA controllers "accepted it exceptionally," the association wrote in its report. The reason: "due to the situation of tension there was in the Doping Control station."
There are clear rules and guidelines for unannounced tests. Teams must guarantee that the doping control officers are able to do their jobs independently and with no interference. Furthermore, players do not have a say in who accompanies them to the restroom for a urine sample or who draws their blood.”