‘I always intended to stay…’ Iker Casillas signs new one-year deal at Porto after winning Primeira Liga title
- Iker Casillas will stay with Porto for another season after penning fresh terms
- There were question marks over his future amid suggestions of cost-cutting
- Veteran Spanish goalkeeper claims he always planned to remain in Portugal
- Real Madrid legend Casillas insists ‘there are more important things than money’
Iker Casillas has ended any lingering speculation over his future by putting pen to paper on a fresh contract with Porto.
The Portuguese champions released a statement on Thursday evening confirming that the veteran Spanish goalkeeper, who will celebrate his 37th birthday this weekend, had agreed a new one-year deal that would see him remain at the Estadio do Dragao until the end of the 2018-19 season.
There had previously been considerable doubt as to whether Casillas would remain with Porto, the club he joined in 2015 after ending a 25-year spell with Real Madrid.
Iker Casillas has signed a new contract to remain at Porto until the end of next season
There had been speculation that the goalkeeper would leave at the end of his previous deal
Spain’s all-time record appearance holder was benched by head coach Sergio Conceicao in October and, though he was later recalled after rival Jose Sa conceded five goals against Liverpool in a Champions League last-16 clash in February, there were also claims from Porto that they were looking to cut costs on player salaries.
Casillas was mentioned in connection with a move to Major League Soccer amid other speculative links to the likes of Premier League duo Liverpool and Newcastle.
But he told Porto’s official website: ‘I am extremely happy to stay here for one more year. ‘It’s amazing to be linked to a fantastic club and city, both of which welcomed me from day one.
However, Casillas insists he always intended to extend his stay at the Estadio do Dragao
CASILLAS AT PORTO
Clean sheets: 55
Honours: 2017-18 Primeira Liga title
‘There were rumours that I would leave, but I always intended to stay.
‘Fortunately, I was able to do so, and I am happy for it.’
Casillas failed to win any silverware during his first two seasons at Porto which coincided with Benfica’s period of dominance, but this term they managed to seal their first title since 2013 with one round of fixtures to spare.
The three-time Champions League winner said he had adapted well to life in Porto and insisted that money was not the most crucial factor as he looks to help re-establish Conceicao’s side as the most dominant force in Portuguese football.
‘At first, it’s always hard. When you get to a new city and club, it’s always complicated. After a while, as time goes by, you establish a connection to the people of the club and the city.
‘You feel the warmth. I’m happy, I’m eager, and, thinking of everything, there are more important things than money. To have the opportunity of playing in this club makes me happy and those who know me know it.’