Iker Casillas has to regain spot in Real Madrid, says Jose Mourinho

PUBLISHED : Monday, 01 April, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 01 April, 2013, 3:39am


Real Madrid manager Jose Mourinho says Iker Casillas will not even be on the bench for the Champions League quarter-final first-leg against Galatasaray on Wednesday.

The Spanish captain has recently returned to full training after breaking a bone in his hand in January.

However, after another fine performance by Diego Lopez in Madrid's 1-1 draw with Real Zaragoza on Saturday, Mourinho said it would be difficult for Casillas to regain his place.

"On Wednesday, Casillas won't be a substitute. Against Levante he will be in the squad," he said. "I can never say that a player will start for the rest of the season, but I can say that once more Diego Lopez has played very well and helped the team obtain a result.

"Playing as he has in games with a high grade of difficulty like Barcelona and Manchester United and playing as he is currently playing, he is important for the team.

"In football we have to try to be honest with ourselves and our players. In this form it will be difficult for him to not start in goal."

Mourinho recognised the problems his side are having at the other end of the pitch after his strikers once again failed to find the net on Saturday.

"The goals will arrive though, if not in this match then in the next," he said.

Madrid's draw meant that Barcelona's lead at the top of La Liga remains at 13 points after they too could manage only a point away at Celta Vigo in an entertaining 2-2 draw.

Lionel Messi was again the protagonist as he scored Barca's second goal to become the first player to score against every other side in the league in consecutive games.

Messi took his tally to 29 goals in the amazing 19-match streak, but said that extending his personal run was less important than the team dropping two points.

"The run isn't the most important thing. I had the luck to score in these games and help the team to keep winning," he said. "We wanted to win after the effort with the national teams but we couldn't do it."

The World Player of the Year had been sick at half-time of Argentina's 1-1 draw with Bolivia in the high altitude of La Paz on Tuesday, but insisted he had not received special treatment from Barca assistant boss Jordi Roura by starting the game.