Iker Casillas’ relationship with Real Madrid dates back to 1990, the same year he began working his way up through the ranks until finally earning a starting role with the First Team in the 1999/00 season.
Although Casillas was asked by Jupp Heynckes to travel with the First Team for a match against Rosenborg two seasons earlier, he continued playing for Real Madrid C until being promoted to Castilla the following season. His rapid ascent didn’t go unnoticed by the Spanish national team youth system, and in 1996 Iker won the Under-15 European Championship. Two years later he repeated as an Under-17 champion after saving a penalty kick, and in 1999 he returned from the Under-19 European Championship with another gold medal around his neck. The following year he was awarded the Bravo Trophy, which is presented to the best European footballer under the age of 21.
No one has challenged Casillas as the the starting keeper of the First Team since 1999/00, and he is one of the squad’s most experienced players and a team captain. The press hailed him as one of the “Heroes of Glasgow” after he stepped in for an injured Cesar in the second half of the 2002 Champions League Final against Bayer Leverkusen only to make three brilliant saves in the waning minutes of the match. A few days later he was called up by Spanish national team, and an untimely injury suffered by Cañizares days before the World Cup in Japan and Korea gave Iker the starting role between the posts. He has been the number one keeper for Real Madrid and Spain every since, leading his national team as its skipper to Euro 2008 and World Cup 2010 glory.
Agile, quick, intelligent, and nearly unbeatable, Casillas is arguably the best active goalkeeper in the world.
- Place of Birth: Mostoles, Spain
- Date of Birth: 05/20/1981
- Position: Goalkeeper
- Weight: 85.5 kg
- Height: 182.2 cm
- Nationality: Spanish
- La Liga (Spanish League): 2000/01, 2002/03, 2006/07, 2007/08, 2011/12
- Copa del Rey (Spanish Cup): 2010/11
- Spanish Super Cup: 2001, 2003, 2008, 2012
- UEFA Champions League: 1999/00, 2001/02
- European Super Cup: 2002
- InterContinental Cup: 2002
- Under-15 European Championship: 1995
- Under-17 European Championship: 1997
- Under-19 European Championship: 1999
- European Championship: 2008, 2012
- Bronze Medal, Confederations Cup: 2009
- World Cup: 2010
- Adidas Golden Glove: 2010
- IFFHS best Goalkeeper of the Year: 2008, 2009
- FIFA best Goalkeeper of the Year: 2009
- UEFA best Goalkeeper in Europe: 2008, 2009
- L'Equipe best Goalkeeper of the Year: 2009
- Bravo Trophy: 2000