Casillas: Great season if…

Real Madrid goalkeeper Iker Casillas says Los Blancos’ season will be classed as one of their greatest if they win the Champions League.

The Spanish giants face Atletico Madrid in Saturday’s final in Lisbon, with their local rivals being all that stand in their way of a historic tenth triumph in Europe’s premier club competition.

Speaking to Spanish television, the 33-year-old admitted his regret that Madrid did not take their domestic League challenge to the wire.

He also said that overcoming criticism is part of football and stated his desire to finish his career at the Bernabeu.

“There are a lot of people who talk about you when you are in and out of the team, but it doesn’t concern me,” Casillas reflected.

“I am not a machine and when you fail, there is always someone there to criticise you. But you have to accept it, there is no other way.

“I think we could have fought until the end for the League. But if we win against Atletico Madrid we will be talking about having had a fantastic season, one of the greatest.

“Atleti are a great team, one of the best in Europe. I don’t accept the opinion that they aren’t favourites because this year they have shown their quality by winning La Liga.

“My idea is to finish my career in Madrid. I have three more years of contract here and my idea is to finish my career here.

“I know it will be difficult because every year the demand is greater, but because I like challenges I will continue with it.”

The Madrid stalwart was then asked about what he was expecting from this weekend’s Champions League final, as opposed to the last one he played in back in 2002.

“There is a big difference between the last final and this one. In the last one, I was a kid and maybe didn’t fully appreciate what it was to play in a final.

“As a consequence, I was only thinking about the shirt. Now I always want to take away memories too.”

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