Casillas: There is no guarantee Spain will make World Cup

Iker Casillas - Real Madrid

Iker Casillas – Real Madrid

Spain’s goalkeeper Iker Casillas has raised concern over the possibillity of his side not featuring in World Cup 2014. 

As it stands, current rules now mean the reigning world champions have to go through qualification which previously was not the case.

This could mean if Spain fail to qualify from Group I, then, they will miss out on Brazil something which Casillas admits is peculiar.

“Obviously it is strange and unusual that the world champions do not have an automatic ticket for Brazil,” he told AS.

“It could happen that we do not reach the World Cup and it would be strange if the champions were not there to defend their title, but we are just thinking about what we are doing.”

The affectionately named San Iker then turned his attention to their upcoming matches in their group, suggesting the French would be Spain’s toughest opponents.

“We want to get our first three points, knowing that, in theory, we have games which should not bring us problems, apart from France,” he added.

“But we know that these are opponents who can take points off us.”

The Spanish team’s most capped player then specifically discussed the opening bout against Georgia on Tuesday.

“We know their ‘keeper, (Giorgi) Loria, who was phenomenal against Belarus.

“We know (Jano) Ananidze, who is a good player.

“As I knew I would be asked, I learned their names.”

Spain are in Group I along with France, Belarus, Finland and Georgia and were not involved in the opening round of qualifiers which took place last Friday and Saturday.

Cartoon of the Day: Rooney shocked at Ronaldo's admiration… for himself

Wayne Rooney has revealed in his latest autobiography that his former Manchester United team-mate and current Real Madrid maestro Cristiano Ronaldo loved the sight of his own reflection.

The 26-year-old striker stated: “In the time I’ve been playing with Ronnie, the one thing I’ve noticed about him is that he can’t walk past his reflection without admiring it, even if we’re about to play a game of football.

Every match, before the team goes out for the warm-up, he runs through the same routine. The kit goes on, the boots go on. Not long after, Ronnie turns to his reflection and stares, psyching himself up for the game.”

While it may not have distracted him to the extent that he missed out on Sir Alex Ferguson’s team talks, thankfully, Rooney has never had quite the same problem.

Rooney shocked at Ronaldo’s admiration… for himself

Pele was better than Messi & Cristiano Ronaldo, says Di Stefano

Real Madrid legend Alfredo Di Stefano feels that Pele was a better player than Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.

The Argentine had plenty of kind words for the Madrid star and the Barcelona attacker, but still feels that the former Brazil international was a class apart.

“The best player ever? Pele. Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are both great players with specific qualities, but Pele was better,” Di Stefano was quoted as saying by El Colombiano.

“Messi is the more technical player of the two. He’s better inside the area, the way he handles the ball and dribbles. You can see that he enjoys himself playing.

“Cristiano has a better body and is physically very strong. He has pace, speed and [is] a player with courage. Plus he can finish with both legs.”

The 86-year-old Di Stefano made over 300 appearances for Madrid between 1953 and 1964, winning five European Cups in the process.

Roberto Carlos: Anzhi do not want to sign Cristiano Ronaldo

Roberto Carlos - Anzhi

Roberto Carlos, al frente del Anzhi / Getty

Roberto Carlos has made it clear that Anzhi Makhachkala are not interested in signing Cristiano Ronaldo from Real Madrid at this point.

The Portugal international recently revealed that he’s unhappy at the Liga champions, and has since been linked with a move away from Madrid on more than one occasion.Nevertheless, Roberto Carlos has stressed that the prolific attacker is not on Anzhi‘s wish-list for now.

“Lots of people have asked me whether Anzhi are after Cristiano Ronaldo. I haven’t come here to sign Cristiano, though,” the Anzhi director stated to Marca.

“Cristiano is happy here. If he doesn’t want to celebrate his goals, then us, the people watching the games will celebrate them for him.

“He shouldn’t worry, people like him a lot. Problems can be resolved.”

The former Brazil international then went on to stress that Anzhi do intend to add to their ranks in the next transfer window.

“We are, however thinking about signing some quality players for next season.”

Zidane: Benzema will soon fulfil his potential

Zinedine Zidane has voiced his opinion that it’s only a matter of time before Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema finds his best form once more.

The France international has been struggling to hit the net in the opening weeks of the 2012-13 campaign, but his compatriot remains confident that the striker will soon play a key role again for club and country.

“Benzema still has to hit top form and be on top of his game again, but the entire world knows that he is a great player,” Zidane stated at a press conference.

“I just know that it won’t be long before he fulfils his full potential at last, both for Real Madrid and for France.”

The former midfielder then looked back at France’s 1-0 World Cup qualification win over Finland, and stressed that the result is all that mattered.

“It was a good game for France in my opinion simply because they bagged the full three points. The coach needs a bit of time to find the best solutions for everything.”

France resume match action on Tuesday when they take on Belarus.

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