Real Madrid goalkeeper Iker Casillas has refused to criticise Jose Mourinho despite openly admitting the tense relationship he had with the Portuguese tactician during his time in charge at the Santiago Bernabeu.
The London Evening Standard carries quotes from the Spain international taken from an interview with Spanish radio station Cadena Cope, which reveal the 33-year-old is hoping to avoid playing the Blues in the Champions League this season due to fears that the Premier League leaders could knock Los Blancos out of Europe's elite club competition.
However, Casillas insisted that if he crossed paths with Mourinho again between now and the end of his career he would be willing to leave previous disagreements in the past and extend his hand to the Chelsea manager.
"With Mourinho I had a love-hate relationship," conceded the veteran custodian. "In his time here I did not speak of him when he was in my locker room, nor do I think that I have to talk now when he is already managing another team and I'm with my team.
"It would be a bit self-seeking and [a] little cowardly on my part. I hope things go very well for him.
"In the time that he was at Real Madrid, he won titles and you have to give him thanks. If I cross paths with him tomorrow I am going to extend my hand, then it will be up to him if he shakes it. I think he would shake."
Real Madrid will be looking to defend their European title after Carlo Ancelotti's side claimed 'La Decima' last season after a 4-1 extra-time victory over local rivals Atletico Madrid in Lisbon last May.
And, with a very winnable two-legged clash against Bundesliga side Schalke in the last 16, the Spanish giants have a great chance of advancing to the quarter-finals again this term, where - according to Casillas - they'll be looking to avoid Chelsea if they progress at the expense of Paris Saint-Germain in the next round.
"I really hope we don't get drawn to play against Chelsea" - Iker Casillas
"I really hope we don't get drawn to play against Chelsea," he added. "Mourinho has them playing phenomenal."
There's no denying that Chelsea look like a serious force to be reckoned with in 2014/15, with Mourinho's men on course to claim trophies in all four competitions they are still participating in.
The Blues are currently sat two points clear of reigning champions Manchester City at the top of the Premier League table and have a Capital One Cup semi-final clash against Liverpool to look forward to later this month.
Challenge on all fronts
After comfortably seeing off Championship opponents Watford 3-0 in the FA Cup third round ten days ago they have been presented with another tie against lower league opposition in the form of bitter rivals Millwall or Bradford City depending on the outcome of tomorrow night's replay.
PSG is probably the most daunting task that stands in the way of Chelsea's dream for an unprecedented quadruple, but given the Ligue 1 champions' inconsistent form this season, the west London club will be secretly confident of seeing off Laurent Blanc's side without too much difficulty.
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