REAL MADRID

Official: Iker Casillas returns to Real Madrid

Real Madrid announced the return of their legendary goalkeeper to join the backroom staff. He will start off working alongside the director general with the Foundation.

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Iker Casillas is coming home for Christmas. Real Madrid confirmed this morning that their legendary goalkeeper, who first arrived at the cub as a nine-year-old and left to play for Porto when he was 34, will join the backroom staff. The news of Iker's return was announced shortly after 11:00 hours, and comes following months of speculation with both the club and former player keen to work together again. Casillas will start off working alongside the director general at the Real Madrid Foundation. He joins a long line of ex-players who have returned to take on new roles at the club, including Raúl, Roberto Carlos and Zidane.

Casillas, who suffered a heart attack during Porto training session on 1 May 2019, was forced to call time on his playing career over the summer. Since then, he has been involved in several different projects - including his candidature for the president's post at the RFEF, which failed to take off. The option of returning to Madrid was always there, following a reconciliation with Florentino Pérez. Iker's farewell in July 2015 was a sad and embarrassing affair - rather than be given a joyous, distinguished send-off, he faced the press alone, without any fanfare and broke down in tears as he read a goodbye note. It was no way to see off a club legend, team captain and icon; the following day the club gave him a second, more fitting tribute, this time with all of the trophies Casillas had won during his time at the club as a backdrop. In the documentary Colgar las alas produced by Movistar+. Iker openly admits, "A player who has spent 25 years at Real Madrid cannot leave like that".

On 18 December, Iker hinted that he could return in an interview with The National: "Obviously, it would be nice for something like that to happen. I have a very long history with Real Madrid, 25 years, so it's a club I have very deep and strong feelings for. It's not something I could ever rule out - especially seeing as I am from Madrid and live here. I think in the short term, sooner rather than later, I will return to work there in some capacity related to football".

Real Madrid statement on Casillas' return

Real Madrid issued the following statement this morning:

"Real Madrid C. F. have announced that Iker Casillas has joined the Real Madrid Foundation as assistant to the general director.

Iker Casillas is a Real Madrid legend who represents the values of our club and is the best goalkeeper in our history.

Iker Casillas won 19 titles during the 25 years representing the club: 3 European Cups, 3 World Club Cups, 2 European Super Cups, 5 Leagues, 2 Copa del Rey and 4 Spanish Super Cups. In Portugal, with Porto, he won 2 Leagues, 1 Cup and 1 Super Cup.

He was capped 167 times by the Spanish national team and won 1 World Cup, 2 European Cups and 1 Under-20 World Cup.

He has received prestigious awards for both his sporting career and his human qualities, such as the Prince of Asturias Sports Award, the Grand Cross of the Royal Order of Sporting Merit, the Gold Medal of the Royal Order of Sporting Merit and the Gold Medal of the Community of Madrid.

Real Madrid are proud to welcome one of their great captains back home".