Kiko Casilla says Leeds United return is 'very difficult' after Elche switch

Kiko Casilla has admitted it will be very difficult for him to return to Leeds United next summer revealing his intention to stay in Spain.

Tuesday, 27th July 2021, 5:00 pm
Leeds United goalkeeper Kiko Casilla. Pic: Getty

The 34-year-old goalkeeper has two years remaining on his current Elland Road contract but his time in West Yorkshire is all but over.

Casilla secured a move back to his home country earlier this month, joining La Liga outfit Elche on a season-long loan deal.

The former Real Madrid shot stopper fell behind Illan Meslier in the pecking order in LS11 after failing to regain a regular starting spot in the wake of an eight-game ban for racism during the 2019/20 campaign.

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Casilla joined Marcelo Bielsa's squad in January 2019 from Los Blancos and has made 62 appearances for the club to date.

His United career, though, appears to be finished with his move to the Estadi Manuel Martínez Valero signalling the end of his spell in a Leeds shirt.

“I have done a reset to mark a point. It will be difficult for me to return to England,” Casilla told Spanish outlet AS.

“Returning to the Spanish league is an interesting challenge that makes me very excited. Although I have been in teams like Real Madrid or Espanyol, I have also had to play from the second category in England with Leeds.

“Almost nobody accepts that and I did it. The category is one thing and that you like football is another.”

Casilla also moved to thank Whites sporting director Victor Orta for allowing him to leave the club after initially thinking of departing England in the winter window.

“Six months ago I had the thought of returning to the Spanish league,” Casilla said.

“I want to thank Leeds, especially [director of football] Victor Orta, for all the facilities they gave me to leave. He knows what I can give to this club.

“It is a normal and current option until the end of the season, but when it ends, if all goes well, there would be no problems to continue. My intention is to stay in Spain