Spain manager Vicente del Bosque has dismissed suggestions that Iker Casillas is considering retiring from international football after he was replaced by David de Gea for the Euro 2016 qualifier against Luxembourg.
There had been calls for Casillas to be dropped following his latest in a spate of costly errors in the shock defeat to Slovenia, and Del Bosque duly responded by placing De Gea in goal for the following encounter.
De Gea promotion
De Gea kept a clean sheet as Spain cruised to a comfortable victory to get their qualification campaign back on track, and his unexpectedly early promotion led to speculation about Casillas’ future with Spain.
Del Bosque, however, was not prepared to entertain reports about Casillas and believes the Real Madrid icon will remain available for selection as Spain continue on the road to the European Championships.
"I've read a story about Casillas wanting to retire from international duty but I don't know anything about it," Del Bosque told Radio Nacional de Espana.
"I don't think there's any truth to it. He has not told me anything."
De Gea has for some time been touted as the long-term successor to Casillas, and Del Bosque has made clear that he recognises the Manchester United goalkeeper as the future Spain No.1. But the World Cup winning coach says the two must rotate duties for now.
The youngster has firmly established himself among the elite ‘keepers in Europe thanks to a sustained period of fine form for Manchester United, which reached something of a zenith in the club’s last encounter.
De Gea was able to arrive for international duty at the crest of a wave of optimism after he had won his team the game against Everton, and his ascension was complete by the time Spain faced Luxembourg.
The 23-year-old’s performances have led to renewed reports of interest with Real Madrid, a club he has been linked with for some time, but it would appear far more likely De Gea will extend his stay at Old Trafford.
De Gea has been linked with a £25 million transfer to the Santiago Bernabeu, something that would ensure he replaces Casillas for club and country, but he is expected to sign a new £120,000-per-week contract.