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5 greatest achievements of Iker Casillas' career

ANALYST
Feature
Modified 21 Dec 2019, 00:49 IST

#2 2010 FIFA World Cup

Casillas led Spain to their first ever World Cup title in 2010
Casillas led Spain to their first ever World Cup title in 2010

Captaining his side in a competitive tournament for the third time (2008 Euros, 2009 Confederations Cup), Casillas and Spain started the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa on the wrong note as the Euro champions fell to a 0-1 defeat to Switzerland in Durban.

Both Spain and Casillas improved massively in the subsequent games, as a 2-0 win over Honduras in Port Elizabeth and a 2-1 win over Chile in Pretoria carried them to the knockout rounds - where they wouldn't concede a goal in four games.

Successive solitary goal wins over Portugal, Paraguay and Germany carried Spain to their first-ever World Cup final, where they beat Netherlands 1-0 after extra-time in Johannesburg. The win made Spain the first European team to win a World Cup held outside Europe.

Casillas's five clean-sheets in seven games helped the Spanish custodian the third goalkeeper to captain a team to World Cup glory, following Italians Gianpiero Combi in 1934 and Dino Zoff in 1982.

#3 2012 European Championships

Casillas celebrates Spain
Casillas celebrates Spain's successful Euro defence in 2012

Spain started their title defence with a 1-1 draw against Italy in Gdansk. That would be the only goal Spain and Casillas would concede the entire tournament.

A 4-0 win over Northern Ireland in Poznan and a 1-0 win over Croatia on their return to Gdansk took Spain to the quarterfinals. There they beat France 2-0 in Donetsk, and then Portugal in a penalty shootout in the semifinals in Donetsk after a goalless 90 minutes, to return to the final.

In a surprisingly lopsided title match in Kiev, Spain overwhelmed Italy 4-0 to become the first team to successfully defend their European Championship title.

In the process, Casillas' fifth-consecutive clean sheet and 509 minutes without conceding a goal broke legendary Italian custodian Dino Zoff's long-standing record of 494 minutes. Casillas, in his 137th international game, also became the first player to feature in 100 match wins.

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Published 22 Oct 2019, 13:53 IST
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