Real Madrid stopper Iker Casillas says he is near ‘the end of tunnel’ of his recovery from injury, and is targeting a return by the end of the month.

The Madrid and Spain captain broke a bone in his left hand after colliding with team-mate Alvaro Arbeloa during their side’s Copa del Rey quarter-final victory over Valencia on January 23.

It was initially thought that it would take the Spanish superstar around three months to recover but he has recovered from the successful operation quicker than expected and could even line up against Real Zaragoza on March 30, reports AS.

Casillas’ return will pose a selection headache for boss Jose Mourinho, who decided to bring in Sevilla goalkeeper Diego Lopez as a replacement in January. Despite looking shaky on occasions, Lopez was in inspirational form in the Champions League tie against Manchester United, making a number of fine saves to ensure Madrid were in the hat for the quarter-final draw.

Casillas posted a video of himself training and saving shots with his left hand on Facebook on Wednesday, leaving the message:

"Thanks for all the messages of support that you have been sending me during these weeks.

"The end of the tunnel is near."

Despite his speedy return Casillas is not expected to be named in the Spanish squad for the upcoming World Cup qualifiers against Finland and France on March 22 and March 26. Barcelona’s Victor Valdes is likely to deputise. 


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