Real Madrid confirmed the departure of legendary goalkeeper Iker Casillas who joins Portuguese side FC Porto.
“Real Madrid and FC Porto have agreed the transfer of Iker Casillas to the Portuguese club,” Real Madrid said in a statement on Saturday after three days of intense negotiations.
“One of the best goalkeepers in this club is not just leaving, today the greatest goalkeeper in the history of the club and in the history of Spanish football is moving on to a new stage in his footballing career,
“Iker is leaving, but his legacy is here forever. His attitude and actions in the 725 games he played in the our jersey shine a light on the path for those who dream of being part of this team,
“For Real Madrid today is a day, above all, of thanks and recognition …. This goodbye evokes thousands of sensations and memories charged with hope, anticipation, sacrifice, strength and unique triumph.”
Casillas will always be remembered as one of Real Madrid’s greatest. The Spain captain has been a hero for his country and lifted everything he could.
In the 2008 Euro championship, Casillas saved two penalties against Italy and lead Spain to win its first tournament in 44 years. This began a golden era for the nation. His save against Dutch Arjen Robben in the 2010 World Cup will be remembered as one of the finest.
While he has not quit from Spain yet, the 34 year-old could soon become second choice as he looked far from his best in last year’s World Cup. Casillas will hope playing week in, week out at Porto will help him get his form back and he can play at the Euro’s next season. But will that spot be for the man who is likely to replace him at Real Madrid? Only time will tell.
For now, it is just difficult to digest the news that after 25 years at one of the biggest clubs in Europe, Casillas is finally let go of.
Casillas had clinched five Spanish titles, three Champions League trophies and two King’s Cup crowns since making his first-team debut with Real Madrid in 1999.