Iker Casillas

Next up is Spain captain and goalkeeper, Iker Casillas.

He was born May 20, 1981, in Móstoles, Madrid.  He started early with Real Madrid, joining their junior squad for the 90-91 season.  It wasn’t until 98-99 that he was called up to the senior squad.

During the 01-02 season, he lost his spot as starting goalie to backup César Sánchez, but managed to regain it when Sánchez was injured in the final game.

He won the La Liga title in 07-08, and won the Zamora trophy.

In 2008, he and captain Rául were awarded new contracts.  Casilla’s contract will keep him with Real until 2017, with an automatic extension if he plays 30 league games in his last season.  There is also a buy-out clause of £113 million.

He has stated that he has no intention of leaving his boyhood club.

Internationally, he debuted at the U-17 games at the 1007 FIFA U-17 World Championship, and was later made captain.  Two years later, he went on to win the FIFA World Youth Championship and the UEFA-CAF Meridian Cup.

He made his senior debut in a match against Sweden when he was 19.  He was an unused sub in Euro 2000.  For the World Cup 2002, he was on the roster as a back-up, but was moved ahead when starting goalie Santiago Cañizares had to withdraw due to injury.

He was the first choice goalie in 2006. When captain Rául was excluded from Euro 2008, Casillas was made captain.  He became the first goalie-captain to lift the world cup trophy as a winner when they won the 2008 UEFA European Championship.

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Fabio Cannavaro

Second on the list is Italian Captain and centre back defender, Fabio Cannavaro. He currently has no home club team.

He was born September 13, 1973, in Naples, Italy.  His mother was a maid, and his father was a bank clerk.

He started his career as a ball boy for Napoli, where he watched his idols Diego Maradona and Ciro Ferrara play.  He eventually progressed enough as a player to play alongside some of them.

In 1995, a cash-strapped Napoli traded him to Parma. In his six years there, he won the UEFA Cup and Coppa Italia.  He also continued to get national team call-ups.

In 2001, he was traded for €23 million to Inter Milan. He spent two years with them, and then did two years at Juventus.  With Juventus, he won two consecutive Scudetti in 2005 and 2006. He also won l’Oscar del Calcio: Migliore difensore, the Football Oscar.

After the Calciopoli trials, when Juventus was moved down from Serie A to Serie B, he chose to leave.  He did three years at Real Madrid, and won La Liga title.

After three years at Real Madrid, he returned to Juventus.  After a disappointing season, he claims to not be returning next year.

Cannavaro has played in three world cups: 98, 02, and 06, where Italy was crowned winners. He has also been in two Euro Cups: 00 and 04.

He has a charity with Ciro Ferrara, called Fondazione Cannavaro Ferrara, that specializes in the procurement of cancer research equipment and surgery for special cancers at a hospital in Naples.

He is married and has three kids, aged 11, 9, and 6.

UPDATE: According to The Spoiler, “Italy captain Fabio Cannavaro has turned down a one-year extension at Juventus to join UAE club Al-Ahli, revealing the move “realises my dream of living in Dubai and finishing my career playing for one of its clubs”.”