Madrid: The parents of Spanish football icon Iker Casillas on Sunday said the outgoing Real Madrid goalkeeper has been the victim of a smear campaign from club president Florentino Perez and feel he deserves to end his career at a bigger club than “second tier” Porto.

Real confirmed on Saturday that a deal has been agreed that will see the custodian bring an end to his 25 years with the La Liga giants and move to the Portuguese side. The transfer brings to an end what has been a troublesome couple of years for the 2010 World Cup-winning goalkeeper — and the 34-year-old’s parents blame the club chief.

“Florentino Perez is largely at fault for Iker leaving Real Madrid. Of course, my son has had more offers, but Florentino did not want him to go to a top team. He does not want Casillas to succeed,” his mother, Maria del Carmen Fernandez quoted as saying by

“Porto is a team of the level of a Segunda (Spanish) B Division team and my son deserves a more upscale team, like Barcelona. A world champion cannot finish his career in Porto! I would not have minded if he went to Barcelona because they are gentlemen.

“With previous presidents Lorenzo Sanz and Ramon Calderon, he was treated well. But Perez did not like him. This president has never loved him.

“Iker has endured things that have never been written about. He has endured psychological pressure and he has been treated differently from other players. He has been vilified in the past five years and it has all been very unfair.”

Iker’s father, Jose Luis Casillas feels that large parts of the media were working with Perez to undermine the legendary goalkeeper.

“This smear campaign was orchestrated by Florentino and had the support of several leading journalists and media since 2010,” he said.

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