Barcelona star and captain Lionel Messi has joined numerous figures in the world of football who have honored Real Madrid and Spain legend Iker Casillas, who has formalized his retirement from football.
The winner of the World Cup with Spain has not played in any competitive match since May last year, when he suffered a cardiac attack.
He had recovered from that heart attack and joined Porto squad again for the 2019/20 season, when he was also part of the Portuguese giant’s official squad.
However, now Casillas has made the decision to retire as he has said he is looking for a new challenge off the field. Messi has commented on this decision, praising the Spaniard for his achievements.
“Iker is retiring now, but he already had the status of a football legend – not only because he was one of the best players in La Liga, but also because of the trophies he won with Spain.” said Messi.
In a message sent to the 39-year-old, Messi said: “You are a fantastic goalkeeper and you were a very difficult opponent.”
“When I come back. “I think it was a very special rivalry that pushed us to raise our standards whenever we faced each other.”
Casillas started his career as a teenager at Real Madrid and went on to make 725 appearances for Los Blancos – helping them win five La Liga titles and three Champions League titles.
He was also the captain of Spain at the 2010 World Cup, which the Spaniards won, and also enjoyed success at the 2008 and 2012 European Championships.
A departure from his hometown sent him to Portugal in 2015, when he embarked on the journey with Porto, for whom he made 156 appearances.