The goalkeeper said he sometimes doubted the decision he made to stay and fight for his future but ultimately could not deal with the prospect of moving away from the Bernabeu
Iker Casillas admits he has been hurt after being on receiving end of whistles from some sections of the Bernabeu crowd, but says he remains desperate to stay at Real Madrid for the remainder of his career.
The 33-year-old goalkeeper has come through a difficult spell for Madrid after he was initially dropped as No.1 by former coach Jose Mourinho and accused of being a dressing room mole.
Casillas was linked with a departure from the club after Carlo Ancelotti upheld that decision in his first season in charge, but he ultimately stayed and has now regained his place to keep new arrival Keylor Navas out of the side following Diego Lopez’s exit.
But that decision and his subsequent performances have failed to convince some sections of the club’s support and the Spain shot stopper admits he has found the situation difficult.
“It hurts to hear whistles,” he told Canal+. “I have been here since I was nine years old, I have done many things with this club and it has also been a springboard to the national team for me.
“The public are free to do what they want but it also hurts. Being here so long also means I have to accept certain things.
“Fans are demanding, I know it and accept it, but I have my little heart and it hurts when my Madridismo is questioned.
“I intend to end my career at Real Madrid. I do not like to imagine my life without this club.
“This is my home and I feel like I was raised here. When you are at the same club for life, you don’t always realise its real value but the moment you leave it for another you would value it more.”
Casillas admits there were several occasions where he considered leaving Spain for pastures new but was ultimately determined to fight for his future with the European champions.
“Yes, I had thought about leaving. I thought before about leaving Spain and Real Madrid,” he said.
“You do not want to disturb things or create a bad environment because you always want Madrid to win. It annoyed me when I would think it was better to leave, but then I said to myself ‘you have to compete, you have to fight’.
“These last two years have seen me fight and seen me struggle. There was a lot of talks about a bid from Arsenal, but nothing was there.There were no offers for me and I want to finish my career here.”
The 2013-14 season was a strange one for Casillas, who played in the successful Copa del Rey and Champions League competitions but was left out in favour of Lopez in La Liga.
The goalkeeper said he actually found the experience refreshing, even if it was a situation that could not last.
“When Ancelotti told me that I would just play ‘the cups’ I thought it would either be a very good year or a very bad year.
“In the end it went well. Last season I played less minutes and I enjoyed it a lot.”