Veteran Spanish goalkeeping legend, Iker Casillas has officially announced his retirement from professional football.
The World Cup winner made this announcement via his Twitter handle where he posted
“The most important thing is the path you travel and the people who accompany you, not the destination that it takes you.
“I think I can say, without hesitation, that this has been the right path and the dream destination. Thanks.”
The former Real Madrid skipper has been out of action since 2019 following a heart attack which kept him out of action for months before rejoining the FC Porto squad. It now appears the Los Blancos legend may not wish to exacerbate his precarious health condition.
Despite playing out the last five years of his career in Portugal, Casillas remains a cult hero back home in Spain for his achievements during his time with the National team and Real Madrid, winning two European cups, a world cup, 5 La Liga titles, 3 UEFA Champions League crowns in an illustrious career spanning across 22 years.
As a mark of honour and appreciation for his contributions to Spanish football, his former club, Real Madrid released a statement on its official website
“The best goalkeeper in the history of Real Madrid and Spanish football came to our house when he was nine years old. Here our bond was formed and defended for 25 years, being forever one of our most iconic captains. Iker Casillas has earned the love of Real Madrid and is a benchmark of the values that represent Real Madrid.
“Today, one of the most important footballers in our 118-year history, a player whom we love and admire, a goalkeeper who has enlarged the legend of Real Madrid with his work and exemplary behaviour both on and off the field, says goodbye as a professional player.
“With the first team he played 725 games during 16 seasons in which he won 19 titles: three European Cups, three Club World Cups, two European Super Cups, five Leagues, two King’s Cups and four Spanish Super Cups.
“In Portugal, with Porto, he has achieved two Leagues, one Cup and one Super Cup. He has been an international with Spain on 167 occasions and has won one World Cup, two Euro Cups and one U-20 World Cup.
“Casillas was included in the FIFA FIFPro World XI five times and chosen as the best goalkeeper in the world by the IFFHS five times.
“His impressive sports career has been recognised with the Prince of Asturias Award for Sports, the Grand Cross of the Royal Order of Sports Merit, the Gold Medal of the Royal Order of Sports Merit and the Gold Medal of the Community of Madrid.
“Casillas belongs to the heart of Real Madrid and will do so forever. Real Madrid wants to convey to him and his family the affection of our club, which is the club of his life.”