FC Porto

AP

Casillas released from hospital after heart attack

Leave a comment

Iker Casillas has been released from hospital after he suffered a heart attack last Wednesday.

The FC Porto goalkeeper, 37, spoke to reporters outside of the CUF hospital in Porto, Portugal on Monday, as he thanked the medical teams at the hospital and FC Porto for their work as the team medics responded immediately to his issue in training last week.

Casillas also thanked the entire soccer world for their well wishes, as messages poured in from across the globe for the legendary goalkeeper.

“A few days ago I went through a difficult situation, something that can happen at any moment of life, but fortunately I’m fine. I am grateful and feel that I am very lucky. Thank you to all who cared, for I felt very dear and cherished. I can only get out of this situation with a smile.”

Casillas won five La Liga titles and four UEFA Champions League titles during his 17-year career with Real Madrid, and has spent the past four seasons at FC Porto. He also captained Spain to the 2010 World Cup and back-to-back European Championships in 2008 and 2012.

What does the future hold for Casillas?

“I feel much better and now it will be a rest for a couple of weeks or a couple of months, I do not know, but the most important thing is to be here. Thank you all,” Casillas said. “I do not know what the future will be, but the most important thing is to be here, to be able to speak and transmit to everyone as I am and how I feel. Thank you very much and see you soon.”

Real Madrid sends ‘Stay strong’ message to Casillas

AP
Leave a comment

BARCELONA, Spain (AP) Real Madrid’s players and fans took a moment before Sunday’s 3-2 Spanish league win over Villarreal to send messages of support to former star goalkeeper Iker Casillas as he recovers from a heart attack.

[ MORE: Chelsea beats Watford ]

Players posed for a team photo wearing T-shirts that said in Spanish “Iker, we are all with you,” while spectators at Santiago Bernabeu Stadium chanted his name and unfurled a huge banner saying “Madrid fans are with you. Stay strong, eternal captain.”

The 37-year-old Casillas fell ill while training for his club, FC Porto, on Wednesday and remains hospitalized after undergoing a catheterization. Porto’s doctors said the former Spain goalkeeper is expected to fully recover, but it is too early to know if he can keep playing professionally.

Casillas was a fan favorite during his 16 seasons with Madrid, where he won three Champions League and five Spanish league trophies. Casillas also helped Spain to win the 2010 World Cup and two European Championships. He joined Portuguese club Porto in 2015.

Against Villarreal, Madrid bounced back from a 0-0 draw at Getafe and a 1-0 loss at relegation-threatened Rayo Vallecano as it struggles to compete consistently despite the return of coach Zinedine Zidane.

Barcelona clinched the league title last week and, with Madrid in a distant third place, all the talk in the Spanish capital is what the club will do in the offseason to shake up its squad.

Little used striker Mariano Diaz and defender Jesus Vallejo responded to their rare starts Sunday by scoring. Diaz struck twice, while Vallejo got his first goal for the club. Gerard Moreno and Juame Costa scored for Villarreal.

Madrid’s Vinicius Junior returned as a late substitute after two months sidelined with a leg injury.

GETAFE FOUTH

Getafe is trying to join Madrid, second-place Atletico Madrid and Barcelona in the Champions League next season.

The modest club moved back ahead of Sevilla into fourth place and the final spot for Europe’s top club competition after beating Girona 2-0 at home.

Jorge Molina continued his excellent season at age 37 by scoring his 14th league goal before Angel Rodriguez put the result beyond doubt.

Also, Eibar edged Real Betis 1-0.

More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/apf-Soccer and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports

Iker Casillas suffers heart attack

Getty Images
Leave a comment

Iker Casillas has been rushed to hospital in Portugal after suffering a heart attack during training.

Casillas, 37, is said to be in a stable condition after the incident which happened at FC Porto’s training ground.

FC Porto have confirmed that Casillas suffered the heart attack and was taken to hospital nearby.

“Iker Casillas suffered an acute myocardial infarction during Wednesday morning training session held at the PortoGaia Training and Training Center in Olival. The session was promptly interrupted to provide assistance to the FC Porto goalkeeper, who is currently at the Hospital CUF Porto. Casillas is well, stable and his heart problem solved.”

The legendary goalkeeper, who captained Spain to their 2010 World Cup and European Championship titles in 2008 and 2012, has spent the last four seasons at Porto after moving on from his incredible 16-year professional career with Real Madrid where he won three Champions League title and five La Liga trophies.

Porto are two points behind Benfica with three games to go in the league, while they also face Sporting Lisbon in the Portuguese cup final on May 25. Casillas and his teammates were knocked out of the Champions League by Liverpool at the quarterfinal stage.

Porto sent out the following message on their Twitter page after the news broke about Casillas.

Real Madrid signs Eder Militao for $56 million

Getty Images
1 Comment

MADRID (AP) Real Madrid has signed young Brazilian defender Eder Militao from Portuguese club Porto.

Madrid says the 21-year-old player signed a contract until June 2025 and will join the squad next season.

[ MORE: La Liga scores, schedule ]

Militao had been playing with Porto since signing from Brazilian club Sao Paulo at the beginning of this season. He played 34 matches with the Portuguese champions, scoring three goals, including one in the group stage of the Champions League. He has been a key piece for a Porto team that has reached the quarterfinals of the European competition.

Madrid says Militao is a quick defender who can play in the middle of the defense or as a right back. He can also help as a defensive midfielder if needed.

He made his debut with Brazil’s national team last year.

Real Madrid, again under coach Zinedine Zidane, hosts Celta Vigo in the Spanish league on Saturday.

More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/apf-Soccer and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports

UEFA release statement on key VAR decisions

Getty Images
2 Comments

After two UEFA Champions League last 16 second leg games were decided by penalty kicks awarded via VAR, European soccer’s governing body has released a statement detailing why both decisions were made.

That was rather nice of them, wasn’t it?

Manchester United’s dramatic 90th minute winner at Paris Saint-Germain came via a handball decision made by the on-field referee after reviewing the TV monitor on the side of the pitch, while Porto’s winning spot kick in the 116th minute of their clash against Roma was also given with the help of VAR.


Here is the explanation, in full, of the decision to hand Man United a penalty kick against PSG.

“The VAR, after checking various different angles available to him, recommended to the referee an on-field review following the penalty area incident. Given that the referee did not recognise the incident clearly during live play (referred to as serious missed incident in the VAR protocol) an on-field review was conducted.

“Following the on-field review, the referee confirmed that the distance that the ball travelled was not short and the impact could therefore not be unexpected. The defender’s arm was not close to the body, which made the defender’s body bigger thus resulting in the ball being stopped from travelling in the direction of the goal. The referee, therefore, awarded a penalty kick.”


And here is the explanation for FC Porto being awarded a penalty kick in the 116th minute

“The VAR, after checking the offside line – which confirmed the attacker to be onside – asked the referee if he had seen the holding offence committed by the AS Roma defender. The referee confirmed he was unaware of any holding during live play and he asked for the images to be prepared to allow him to conduct an on-field review (serious missed incident). The review convinced the referee that a penalty kick should be awarded for a holding offence.”


Now, these explanations do act to clear up the thinking behind the decisions and why the referee and/or his video assistants came to the decision they did.

But some of the reasoning given for United’s penalty at PSG raised a few eyebrows, especially with the line saying “the distance that the ball travelled was not short and the impact could therefore not be unexpected.”

If you accept that opinion on certain calls will not disappear with the introduction of VAR, then that will probably allow you to sleep at night…