How Iker Casillas said farewell to Real Madrid
Sunday, July 12, 2015
"We'll see each other soon," vowed an emotional Iker Casillas as he said goodbye to Real Madrid after 25 years and gave his reasons for joining Porto. Here is his parting address.
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On his move to Porto
"Since yesterday I'm no longer part of Real Madrid. I'm off to Porto for two reasons: firstly, the initial impressions I got from the club, their president and coach Julen [Lopetegui], who I've known for a long time. Secondly, the kindness that I've received from people since they've known my destination would be Portugal.
"They've won me over and I'm very happy. I'll do whatever I can to not let them down and I'll fight to the end. Thank you Porto for showing confidence in me."
On his Madrid career
"After 25 years defending the badge of the world's best club, the difficult day has come to say goodbye to this institution which has given me everything. It seems like yesterday when I pulled on the shirt for the first time and a dream came true.
"During those times we have laughed, cried, won and lost. This club made me as a person and helped me grow, with values such as respect, companionship and, above all, humility. I've always tried to take them with me wherever I've gone.
"I remember all my team-mates, I've lived unique moments and they were my family. I'm leaving some great friends.
"Also, I want to recognise all my coaches, from right back to when I started as a boy. From [Antonio] Mezquita, who rescued me to my last coach, Carlo Ancelotti. I've learnt a lot from all of them."
On Madrid's staff and supporters
"To the coaching staff: they have shown me understanding, wisdom, experience and professionalism in bad moments. We've also shared joy together. Also to all the club staff, who make Real Madrid what it is day to day. You don't see them, but they're always there.
"To the Madrid fans: thanks for your unconditional support, for being your captain for the last five years, for lifting trophies.
"Above all, rather than being remembered as a good or bad goalkeeper, I want to be remembered as a good person. Thanks – a thousand thanks – I'll never forget you. Wherever I go, I'll carry on supporting Real Madrid. We'll see each other soon."