We always thought Iker Casillas and Real Madrid belonged together, but they apparently have come to the end of the road.
Casillas has agreed to join FC Porto from Real Madrid, Spanish newspaper Marca reported Wednesday. The clubs have agreed to terms of a transfer for Casillas, who looks set to end his Real Madrid career after 25 years, 17 of which were spent in the first team.
Real Madrid will say goodbye to Casillas on Friday at a special event at its Santiago Bernabeu Stadium, club sponsor BWIN said Wednesday night on Twitter.
Casilas will join FC Porto in time for the start of its preseason training camp in Holland. His fast-moving transfer to Porto will spare him from traveling with Real Madrid on July 12 for its tour of Australia and China only to say goodbye to his boyhood club from the other side of the world.
Casillas, 34, is an iconic figure at Real Madrid. He graduated from Real Madrid’s youth academy and debuted in the first team in 1999. He was Real Madrid’s starting goalkeeper for over a decade until his form and standing at the club dipped in 2012, beginning a long-running saga (some call it an internal campaign against him) over his potential exit.
Casillas was due €24 million ($26.5 million) gross under terms of the last two years of his contract with Real Madrid, according to Spanish radio station Cadena SER. Casillas reportedly agreed to give up €8.4 million ($9.26 million) of that amount, and the clubs are working out an agreement under which they both will pay the remaining portion of the salary Casillas would have earned.
This likely is the end for Casillas at Real Madrid. His resúmé with the club includes five La Liga (Spanish first division) and three UEFA Champions League titles among the 19 major trophies he helped Real Madrid win.
Casillas also boasts a glittering record with Spain’s national team, having captained “La Roja” to victories in the 2010 FIFA World Cup and the 2008 and 2012 UEFA European Championships.
Many suspect Casillas’ Real Madrid exit clears the way for the Spanish giant to pursue a transfer for Manchester United standout David de Gea. Kelyor Navas and Fernando Pacheco are the remaining senior goalkeepers on Real Madrid’s books.
Thumbnail photo via Twitter/@English_AS
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