Real must move past Casillas exit

2015-07-17 09:17
Iker Casillas (AP Photo)

MELBOURNE - The controversial departure of Real Madrid captain and goalkeeper Iker Casillas has created "division" at the Spanish giants and they must put it behind them as soon as possible, coach Rafa Benitez said on Friday.

Real were heavily criticised for a perceived lack of respect for the goalkeeper after he appeared alone at the Bernabeu media room on Sunday to announce his departure from his boyhood club after 16 seasons.

Though Real hastily organised an official send-off on Monday for Casillas, who is heading to Porto, several hundred fans chanted for President Florentino Perez to resign at the ceremony, blaming him for forcing the 34-year-old out.

"I want to talk about Casillas," Benitez told reporters in Melbourne on Friday ahead of Real's International Champions Cup match against Italian club AS Roma.

"When I first got the job, he's the first person I called. We met face to face, we had many discussions," he said through an interpreter.

"We talked in person about many scenarios that would happen. I wish him all the best.

"I don't like the division that is happening within Real Madrid now and that's got to be put behind us."

With Casillas gone, Real are in the market for a new goalkeeper to supplement Costa Rica international Keylor Navas and the inexperienced Fernando Pacheco.

Benitez said Navas was first choice.

"Navas is our number one at the moment," he said.

"I've spoken with him. He's more experienced than our other keepers so he's at the front right now."

Real are also reported to be pursuing Espanyol goalkeeper Kiko Casilla and Manchester United's David De Gea.

"In terms of another keeper coming, we've got two keepers that the press is talking about at the moment," Benitez said.

"We've got Kiko Casillas and we've got De Gea.

"For me, any position if we have more competition for positions, it only means that position gets stronger."

Read more on:    real madrid  |  la liga  |  iker casillas  |  soccer

What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


With the Absa Premiership in full swing, who will be crowned champions when all is said and done? Will Mamelodi Sundowns defend their title? Or can Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates or Bidvest Wits mount a serious challenge? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Who will claim the Premier League title at the end of the 2016/17 season?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.