Casillas wants to retire at Madrid

Real Madrid goalkeeper Iker Casillas says he would like to end his playing career with Los Blancos aged 39.

It is 13 years since Madrid and Spain captain Casillas made his debut for the Spanish champions, and in an interview with the club’s official website he revealed that he is only thinking of ending his sporting career at the Santiago Bernabeu.

“It would be a dream come true to end my career at the club I had the privilege of starting out with when I was only nine,” said the 31-year-old.

“Time goes quickly, but I'm really pleased with all the things that Real Madrid has given me and all that I've given the club.

“Now you realise that 13 years have gone by and you hope there will be many more. My contract is until I'm 36 and my dream is to retire when I'm 39”.

Casillas also reflected on his official debut with the club, having previously been called into the squad for a Champions League game against Rosenborg aged just 16.

“My first senior game was a special day because my debut was in San Mames [against Athletic Bilbao] and with Real Madrid on an official level.

“I'm happy because I never thought I would be here so long, even though it was my dream.”

He also has a favourite memory from his time at the top.

“Without a doubt it was the first European Cup I won. It was really special, unique, for me because in 10 months I went from playing with Real Madrid C, in the Third Division, to playing a Champions League final.

”It's the title I'm most fond of. I have other great memories too, such as those of my second European Cup and the various Ligas that we've won.”

Since then Casillas has picked up the nickname San Iker, or the Saint, and is regarded by fans as the symbol of Real Madrid.

“Out of all my teammates here I'm the most veteran player in terms of seasons with the club. I don't know about being the saint and symbol, but what is true is that being the most veteran player I have a big responsibility in terms of others.

“I always planned to progress little by little and I remember teammates from back then such as [Fernando] Hierro and [Manuel] Sanchis who told me that at 18 or 19 I had a huge career ahead of me.

“I have a lot of memories and hope there will be many more,” he added.

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