New goal: Casillas confirms he will challenge Rubiales for RFEF presidency

February 18 – First it was hotly rumoured, then it picked up steam – and now it’s confirmed. Spain’s World Cup-winning goalkeeper Iker Casillas has announced his intention to run for the presidency of the Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) against the present incumbent Luis Rubiales.

The 38-year-old, who hasn’t played football since suffering a heart attack during training last May, will hang up his gloves in the summer if he is elected for the four-year term, signalling the end of a playing career that spans 20 years.

The former Real Madrid icon says he has informed his current side FC Porto of his decision .

Casillas joined Porto in 2015 from Real, where he made 725 appearances and helped them win three Champions Leagues and five La Liga titles.

In his announcement on Twitter, Casillas said: “Yes, I will stand for presidency of the Spanish FA when elections are called. Together we will put our federation at the level of the best football in the world.”

Casillas led Spain to victory in the 2010 World Cup and won two successive European Championships, in 2008 and 2012. In all he won 167 caps.

Rubiales has been a divisive figure ever since taking over, with his first decision to relieve Julen Lopetegui of his duties as coach of the Spanish national side on the eve of the World Cup in 2018. He has been in constant conflict with Javier Tebas, the president of the Spanish league.

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