Dressed in a white buttoned-up shirt, as if this immaculate piece of clothing could shield him against everything that has been happening inside his body, Porto goalkeeper Iker Casillas was discharged from hospital on Monday, five days after suffering a heart attack.
The former Real Madrid player and Spanish squad captain walked out of the CUF Hospital in the Portuguese city of Porto, where he gave a news conference during which he admitted: “I don’t know what my future holds.”
Now I’ll have to rest for a couple of weeks, or even a couple of months, I don’t know Soccer player Iker Casillas
In a voice that was trembling with emotion, Casillas thanked the medical staff at the hospital but also all of the people who rushed him to the hospital as soon as he started feeling unwell at a training session on Wednesday of last week.
“I’m feeling much better. Now I’ll have to rest for a couple of weeks, or even a couple of months, I don’t know. I don’t know what the future holds, but the main thing is being here,” said Casillas, who will turn 38 in two weeks.
According to medical reports, the Spanish player will not undergo tests until September – in the best of cases – to determine whether his heart is strong enough to let him go back to playing top-level soccer. Very few doctors consulted by this newspaper seemed to view this as a likely outcome.
“This is something that can happen at any time in life, to anyone. It was my turn. You always need to put on a smile at times like these,” said Casillas, who was flanked by his partner Sara Carbonero during his three-minute news conference.
The player has been using social media to keep supporters abreast of his condition. Before walking out of the hospital, he tweeted: “Good morning! I have a #HappyHeart, how about you?” alluding to Corazón contento, a song by Marisol, a child and teen star from the 1960s.
“Good morning! I have a #HappyHeart, how about you?”
After 16 years at Real Madrid, Casillas joined Porto in 2015 and has a contract until June 2020. Fans paid tribute to him this past weekend at a Porto-Desportivo Aves match at Dragão stadium.
“Thank you to the thousands and thousands of people who have sent me so many messages that I have been unable to answer them, but I will now because I’ll have the time for it,” said Casillas.
English version by Susana Urra.