Franco: Casillas is Spain's greatest ever goalkeeper

The Argentine has nothing but respect for the Blancos captain, whom he will go up against in Saturday’s Fifa Club World Cup final in Morocco

San Lorenzo goalkeeper Leo Franco says Real Madrid counterpart Iker Casillas is the most important shot-stopper in the history of Spanish football.

The two will meet in Saturday’s Fifa Club World Cup final in Morocco, but Franco already knows the Blancos captain well from his 11-year spell in Spain with Mallorca and Atletico Madrid.

Indeed, the Argentine holds Casillas in the highest esteem and says he will relish the opportunity to once again share a field with a player who has won a World Cup and two European Championships with his national team, as well as three Champions League titles with Madrid.

“I can only praise Iker and say that I respect him so much for what he has achieved,” Franco told MARCA.

“Casillas is always there and he always plays, so it is hard to imagine a Madrid or Spain side without him in it.

“Iker is the most important goalkeeper in the history of Spanish football and I do not think that that is open for discussion.”

Meanwhile, Franco admitted that San Lorenzo have it all to do against Madrid, who are on a 21-game winning streak in all competitions.

However, the 37-year-old is optimistic about his side’s hopes of upsetting the odds – provide they stick to their game plan and nullify the threat posed by Cristiano Ronaldo and Co. on the break.

“We are aware that in order to have any chance we will have to make very few errors, reduce the amount of space in which they have to play and take advantage of any chance that comes our way,” Franco added.

“We’ll have to play in Madrid’s half of the field knowing that if we lose the ball, they have a deadly counter-attack.

“But I think we will take on that risk in order to win the game.”

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