Iker Casillas to engineer a move away from FC Porto
Real Madrid legend Iker Casillas is considering one last big move before retirement.
After spending 16 glorious years at the Santiago Bernabeu, the 3 time UEFA Champions League winner, Casillas joined Porto at the start of the 2015-16 season.
His relationship with the officials of his boyhood club ended on a bitter note, with his family accused Real Madrid president Florentino Perez behind Iker’s exit. Many Madrid fans demanded Perez’s resignation for handling the situation wrongly. His form was also dropped surprisingly in his last season at the Bernabeu. He made several high-profile and horrendous mistakes that cost Real Madrid some crucial points. Iker Casillas joined Portuguese giant Porto for 2 years in a reported €6m deal with the option of extending it for further 12 months.
Casillas had two brilliant seasons with Porto but according to Spanish publication Don Balon, Casillas wouldn’t negotiate regarding the 12 months extension and engineer a move away from Estadio do Dragao.
Marseille are reported to be seriously interested in the 35-year-old Spanish goalie, but Casillas wouldn’t fancy a move to the French club. His partner Sara Carbonero has a huge say in any such move and she prefers London. Casillas’ potential availability has alerted the London clubs including Arsenal, Chelsea, Tottenham and West Ham United but Casillas is said to prefer a move to Emirates or Stamford Bridge.
If Thibaut Courtois does leave for Real Madrid from Chelsea in the summer, then Casillas would fit there perfectly. Arsenal will also have a free space for a goalie as David Ospina is almost certain to leave in search of regular first team action. Spurs have little chance to go for Casillas as their number one Hugo Lloris has recently signed a long-term extension at the White Hart Lane.
West Ham may be the least likely destination for Casillas as they can’t offer him European football but the Hammers are ready to spend big this season and can offer Casillas first team opportunities on a regular basis which may lure him to join the Olympic Stadium-based club. Casillas recently broke Paolo Maldini’s record of most number of Champions League appearances by a player. His recent performances have forced Spain coach Julen Lopetegui to reconsider calling Casillas to the National Team.
On being asked whether Casillas can still return to the national fold, he recently told L’Equipe, “Of course. Iker is a legend who is still playing at the top level. He plays for a big team, Porto,” “Yes, we spoke to him and at that moment we decided he wouldn’t come.
But the doors are open for him, just like for any other player.” Casillas is Spain’s most capped player with 167 appearances under his belt. With the wealth of experiences at his disposal, the one-time FIFA World Cup and two-time UEFA Euro Championship winner, would not be short of offers from big clubs across Europe if he does decide to leave Porto.