Iker Casillas suffers heart attack, taken to hospital

FC Porto's Iker Casillas during the warm up before match between FC Porto and Liverpool. (Action Images via Reuters)
Updated 01 May 2019

Iker Casillas suffers heart attack, taken to hospital

MADRID: Spanish goalkeeper Iker Casillas, 37, has suffered a heart attack and has been taken to hospital, Portuguese radio station Renascenca reported on Wednesday, adding that the FC Porto player was out of danger.

Casillas, who made 167 appearances as goalkeeper for the Spanish national team on the way to winning a World Cup and two European Championships, suffered the attack during a morning training session with his club and was taken to hospital where he was diagnosed with myocardial infarction.

The club stated that the 37-year-old is “stable” in hospital and remains under observation.

“Iker Casillas suffered an acute heart attack during this Wednesday's training session,” Porto said in a statement on their official website.

“The session was quickly halted so medical assistance could be provided to the Porto goalkeeper, who is currently in the CUF Porto Hospital. Casillas is OK, stable, and the heart problem has been resolved.”

The club's official Twitter account added: “Always together. Stay strong, Iker.”

Spain goalkeeper Casillas won three Champions League titles, and La Liga five times, at Real Madrid.

His exploits for the national team earned him the nickname 'Saint Iker' and made him one of the best known personalities in Spain. He is married to the television journalist Sara Carbonero, with whom he has two children.

Madrid wished their former captain a full recovery.

“Real Madrid would like to offer all our support to our beloved captain Iker Casillas. Throughout his professional career, he always overcame the hardest challenges in order to bring glory to our club,” Real said in a statement.

“He has taught us to never give up and has shown us numerous times that the best way to win is to remain as strong as possible when times are tough. Real Madrid and all our fans wish him a speedy recovery and send him all our support.” 

A tweet on the Spain team's official account said: “All the family at the national team and the Spanish football federation are with you Iker Casillas. Get well soon.”


Ukraine qualify for Euro 2020 despite Ronaldo's 700th goal

Updated 15 October 2019

Ukraine qualify for Euro 2020 despite Ronaldo's 700th goal

  • Ukraine held on to secure first place in Group

KIEV: Ukraine beat Portugal 2-1 on Monday to clinch a place at Euro 2020 despite Cristiano Ronaldo scoring his 700th career goal.
Roman Yaremchuk and Andriy Yarmolenko put Ukraine two goals up after 27 minutes.
Although Ronaldo scored his landmark goal from the penalty spot in the 72nd minute and Taras Stepanenko was sent off, Ukraine held on to secure first place in Group B.
Ukraine join already qualified Poland, Russia, Italy and Belgium at next summer's finals, while second-placed Portugal, who are eight points behind Ukraine, have Serbia just a point behind them with two matches remaning after they beat Lithuania 2-1.
"There are days like these, when the ball just doesn't want to go in," said Portuguese midfielder Danilo. "No need to do the maths now: we just need to win the next two games to reach Euro 2020."
Yaremchuk pounced from close range in the sixth minute. The centre forward reacted fastest after Rui Patricio dived to parry Serhiy Kryvtsov's header from a corner, and poke the ball across the line.
Yarmolenko added the second when outpaced the Portuguese defence to finish a swift counter attack with a low, crisp first-time shot.
Portugal dominated the second half and finally achieved a breakthrough when Stepanenko blocked a shot with his arm, receiving his marching orders before Ronaldo blasted home the penalty to make it 700 goals for club and country.
The goal was his 95th for Portugal. The 34-year-old is now just 14 goals behind the all-time international record of 109 held by former Iran striker Ali Daei.
While the exact number of goals scored by some of the game's legends is the subject of debate, Ronaldo is agreed to be the sixth player to reach 700 after Austrian Josef Bican, Brazilians Romario and Pele, Hungarian Ferenc Puskas and German Gerd Muller.