NEWS
Tuesday December 11 2012
Iker prioritises Europe, ponders MLS

Iker Casillas has declared that he would take finishing 25 points behind Barcelona in the League if Real Madrid won the European Cup.

Madrid are into an 11th season looking to win the Champions League again and lift the trophy for a record 10th time.

With the team already 11 points behind Barca in the League race, such is Casillas’ ambition for the ‘Decima’, he has reflected that he would accept the domestic situation worsening if it meant lifting the European Cup in May at Wembley.

“The League or the Decima? The Decima, no doubt about it,” he declared to La Sexta today.

“If you told me that Barcelona would finish 25 points ahead, which is not the image that we want to project, but that we would then win the tenth European Cup, I would take that.”

The ‘keeper was taken to task on the current League situation and asked to try and explain why they have dropped 13 points already this season, following on from the 2011-12 campaign that saw them drop a total of 14 points.

“Against Madrid, people run, fight and battle for everything. For example, Sevilla were fully charged against us and then they lost to Valladolid.

“Barcelona is hungry for title after losing the League. But, with the history and legacy at Real Madrid, we cannot give up ever. We will continue to fight for ourselves and for the people who are behind us.”

Casillas was asked of his relationship with Mourinho and what the Portuguese is really like behind the scenes.

“What he does not like is people going back. He wants you to progress, to move forward. You can fewer or more fights with him, but it is always to his face.

“If you have to say something, then it is to his face. And if you love him, you say so to his face.

“He is different, he is nothing like what has been projected. He takes away a lot of the pressure. And yes, he is fierce.

“He is very professional, very demanding. He finds out about every opponent, from Alcoyano in the Cup to Bayern Munich in the Champions League.

“I know nothing of his future, I have not spoken to him. If the club asked him to extend his contract [last May] then it is because they want him to stay.

“I cannot imagine a Real Madrid without Mourinho, he has said that he is planning for the next pre-season.”

Finally, the most capped Spaniard was asked to picture where he sees himself retiring in the future, and reflected that it may not be playing in the Spanish capital.

“Yes, I would like to play out my football in the future in a more relaxed environment and if I have to play somewhere else then it would be for a team that would not come into direct competition with Real Madrid.

“For example, in the USA, which I love. I would like to retire with Madrid, but if the critics are fierce when I am 31, imagine what they will be like when I’m 37.”

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