Real Madrid goalkeeper Iker Casillas is likely to stay at the club beyond the winter transfer window despite losing his place for club and country.
The 32-year-old World Cup winner has had a disappointing 2013, having lost his place in the Real starting eleven to Diego Lopez and now playing second fiddle to Victor Valdes in the national side.
The initial decision to drop Casillas was made by former Los Blancos manager Jose Mourinho, and the keeper was expected to be reinstalled to the line up under Carlo Ancelotti. But the Italian has made it clear Lopez will continue as number one, with Casillas appearing in the Copa del Rey and the Champions League.
Speculation has surrounded Casillas in recent months, with Manchester City, Arsenal, and PSG all mentioned as possible destinations as he seeks to cement his place in the squad that will head to Brazil next summer as Spain attempts to retain the title they won in 2010.
But in a conversation with Pepe Reina as the pair took part in preparations for Spain’s last match against Belarus, Casillas is said to have expressed doubts about leaving the Santiago Bernabeu.
Spanish television station Cuatro transcribed the conversation between the pair in which Reina suggested Casillas should leave. “How many games could you play? 10, 12,” Reina is claimed to have said, before adding “It’s a pretty bad season. So [you should leave] because you’re going to play 10 or 12 games at most.”
According to Cuatro, Casillas responded: “Yes, but leave now? I don’t think so, mate. At least I get to play the Copa del Rey…”