Sports legend Iker Casillas chooses Dubai to open debut goalkeeper training centre outside Spain

Sports legend Iker Casillas chooses Dubai to open debut goalkeeper training centre outside Spain

DUBAI, 8th September, 2021 – Spain and Real Madrid legend Iker Casillas has chosen Dubai to launch his debut training centre for goalkeepers outside of Spain called the ‘Iker Casillas Goalkeeper Training Centre’.
The Centre, established in partnership with Dubai’s Fursan Hispania FC, helmed by former Spain international football star Michel Salgado, is dedicated to honing the skills of aspiring young goalkeepers from the UAE and the region, as well as established club and country professionals and goalkeeping coaches.
The launch of the Centre was announced during a press conference held today at the Dubai Sports Council, in the presence of Saeed Hareb, Secretary-General of Dubai Sports Council; Iker Casillas; Michel Salgado; and Nasser Aman Al Rahma, Assistant Secretary-General of the Council.
Hareb said, “The launch of the ‘Iker Casillas Goalkeeper Training Centre’ in Dubai is great news for young goalkeeping talents and coaches from not just the UAE but around the region. The programme has been developed by one of the finest goalkeepers in football history – a legend who has won a World Cup (2010) and two European titles (2008 and 2012) as captain of Spain, and numerous other titles in a long and illustrious career with his club Real Madrid, both at home and on the continental stage. Casillas has a few equals in football history, and the fact that he has chosen Dubai to launch this specialised programme for goalkeepers reaffirms Dubai’s position as one of the world’s leading centres for the development of sports talent and coaches, and the preferred destination for investment in the sports sector.”
Hareb added that both Casillas and Salgado will bring a wealth of experience and expertise to the Centre, which will serve as a unique space for goalkeepers and goalkeeping coaches looking to refine and hone their skills.
“Salgado has been our partner for many years and has worked on many different projects with Dubai Sports Council for the benefit of football in the country and region, and we are pleased to strengthen our association with him as part of this new initiative. The Council’s doors are always open to new projects and initiatives that seek to develop sports here and our sports sector, and for people looking to invest in the sector. We assure them of our complete support, and we remain committed to providing them with all the means of success,” Hareb concluded.
Iker Casillas said, “As you all know, my football career was brought to an early and premature end due to health reasons. This training centre is like starting a new second life for me. I have always dreamt of giving back to this sport which has given me everything, and I have always wanted to open a training centre dedicated to goalkeeping. There are very few specialist training centres for goalkeepers in the world, and I am really pleased to launch this important project here in Dubai, a city where I have always felt welcomed.”
“I would like to thank Dubai, first and foremost, and then Michel Salgado and Dubai Sports Council for making this project become a reality. Our focus will, of course, be on creating goalkeepers, but more than that, I want this training centre to develop good human beings because that is the most important thing,” Casillas added.
The Centre will offer three different products tailored to suit different needs – a Weekly Programme, a Programme for Goalkeeping Coaches and a more comprehensive Fursan Goalkeeping Implant Programme.
The ‘Weekly Programme’ will be held four times a year and it will be aimed at players from around the GCC region. Each weekly programme will be of a six-day duration, with six hours of practical and theory lessons every day. The Programme will be hosted by Fursan Hispania and overseen by ICA coaches, and it will be tailored to the specific technical needs of players ranging from age 8 to 21.
The ‘Programme for Goalkeeping Coaches’ will also be based on the ICA methodology and it will be open to coaches from around the GCC and Middle East, and tailored to their needs. Meanwhile, The ‘Fursan Goalkeeping Implant Programme’ will cater to goalkeepers of different levels, with the coaching team working under the quality standards and methodology of Iker Casillas.
The ‘Iker Casillas Goalkeeper Training Centre’ and Fursan Hispania will also work with Dubai Sports Council to develop UAE-specific programmes, which include an elite programme that caters to goalkeepers from the UAE’s football leagues as well as goalkeepers from other Middle East and North Africa leagues.
Fursan Hispania will also scout for the best goalkeeping talents from the UAE and the region, and recommend them for a full-boarding programme at the Iker Casillas Academy in Madrid, Spain.