D.Since 2010, talking about a World Cup in Spain is talking about iniesta Y boxes. We spoke with Andrs last Wednesday and today MARCA talks with Ikerthe Saint who gave us half the World Cup with his arsenal of saves, with the heads up to Robben as an iconic image of a country that had never celebrated a save as a goal. “It was luck,” says Iker, recalling that World Cup. For this man from Qatar, from the sidelines, he does not see Spain as a favorite like Brazil or France, but he dreams…
Ask. Iker, in another World Cup… but now in a different way.
Response. Yes, in another way. Now as a fan, commentator, as a FIFA Legend… But I am very happy because I like football and I love these events. I have experienced them as a viewer when I was a child, as a footballer a few years ago and now I am enjoying them again from abroad.
P. Do you hate not being on the pitch?
R. Yes and no. I know because what you live inside is very exciting and playing a World Cup is something wonderful, but it is also true that since I have already had that experience and I know what there is… There is no need to be selfish and let others enjoy.
P. Let others get nervous, right?
R. Exactly, I already had enough.
Q. When you see the golden glove next to you, what is the first thing that comes to mind?
R. A job well done comes to mind, which was when we won the World Cup in South Africa. This means that if someone has won such an emblematic trophy in a World Cup, it is because they have also won the World Cup.
Q. I haven’t conceded a single goal since the first phase…
R. For me it was the perfect World Cup, in every way. And more if we take into account how we started. And it is also that we were the favorites when we had never achieved a star, but we had already been playing football at an incredible level for two years. The circumstances that we experienced there in South Africa were very beautiful.
Q. We asked Iniesta on Wednesday to define his goal against the Netherlands with one word. How do you describe your stop to Robben?
R. Yes, I am convinced that Robben and I lived through that move ten times and it is possible that I scored a goal in nine. That day because of the situation, because of the circumstance or because someone wanted it to be that way, he hit me on the foot and the ball went out.
Q. We always talk about that stop, but for you, which was the most important? Robben’s or Cardozo’s penalty in the quarterfinals?
R. Well look… I give it more importance… I don’t know, let’s see. The final one is very important because it was the last one, obviously. But against Paraguay we were not playing a good game, we were not reading the game well. Paraguay was playing very strong and we were a bit lost. If they scored that goal at 60′ I don’t know what would have happened, if we had gone crazy, if we had entered the Paraguayan game… At that moment we could have lost it.
Q. I ask you now about this selection. First things gay. He puts himself in her shoes and what does he imagine?
R. It’s a tremendous situation, he has to be screwed, because that’s the way the word is. But it is what football has, good and bad things. If you ask Balde now he will tell you that everything is wonderful. The player has to live with that possibility.
Q. As a captain, how would you have managed a case like this with the dressing room?
R. What you have to do is recover and think about yourself, because you have a career ahead of you and after the World Cup, life goes on and you have to compete. Sometimes we don’t see beyond and think only about the moment, but now he has to recover and think about the season.
Q. How do you see the selection? Can you imagine her putting another star on the shirt?
R. I am what I say, and I don’t mean it badly. I don’t consider it a favorite like France, Brazil or Argentina. Above all, I see Brazil and France as more consolidated, but Spain can perfectly reach the semifinals and, from there, why is she not going to win the World Cup? Especially because of the changes that have been taking place over the years. Luis Enrique has made a generational change and that is not easy. And he has achieved it, it has given him good results. You will agree or not with the people he has led, but he has led Spain to the semifinals of the Euro, to a final of the Nations League and to the final four of another. The results are positive.
Q. As a goalkeeper, what advice would you give Unai before a World Cup?
R. That you have to be very focused, that you have to be involved all the time and with the ability to respond. Unai, David or Roberto. It seems that Unai starts with an advantage, but he has to convey maturity and calm to the rest so that when the team looks back, they realize that they can be calm.
Q. What did you like the most about the concentrations?
R. I loved watching all the games, we watched almost all of them. That was good because you soaked up soccer and also you were already seeing and analyzing rivals. You have to be humble and think about who can touch you.
Q. But did you see them in an analysis plan and not joking with the group?
R. Let’s see, there was everything, but it is true that you see them very attentive, because we love football and those who have experienced it enjoy it. We thought about the day to day, being humble, but you also looked to the future thinking about what could come in the eighths or quarters. That’s getting into a competition.
Q. Luis Enrique said yesterday, in his streaming, that by the way, I don’t know if you saw it…
R. Yes, I love it, and I think it has adapted very well to today’s times and we all have to adapt. We have to be part of this whole technological revolution so as not to be left behind. I think what he does is very good.
Q. You are also very active on social networks.
R. Yes, well… But it’s costing me more [risas]but I let go.
Q. I return to the question from before. Luis Enrique said in the streaming that they have a cheer with the national team. Did you also have yours?
R. Yes, yes, too. I was very lazy. It was always won by the most studious who are, coincidentally, those who later became coaches. Xavi, Xabi Alonso… Also Pepe Reina… I put the results that he believes, but then the opposite happens.
Q. Have you ruled out the path of being a coach one hundred percent?
R. Yes, yes, nothing, nothing. That doesn’t mean that one day I don’t want to get the coaching title, but it’s not what convinces me or motivates me. To be a coach you have to be worth a lot and I don’t think he has patience.
Q. Which final would you bet on for this World Cup?
R. I wish it was a Spain-France or Spain-Brazil… If Spain reached the semifinals I would be happy, but if it reached the final, even better. Come on, Spain-France.
Q. Who do you think is going to be the best goalkeeper?
R. Hopefully one of our goalkeepers, which would mean that Spain has come far. If I have to analyze it well… There is Neuer, Courtois, Alisson, Lloris… There are good goalkeepers.
Q. The golden boot?
R. It is very difficult. Given the streak he was on, I would tell you that Benzema, but with the injury now… Let’s see what happens. And then Neymar comes out and he can mess it up. Or Messi. O Christian! It seems that Cristiano has come to the World Cup as a guest and people don’t count on him for all the moves he has at Manchester United, but…
Q. Do you have Cristiano?
R. I know. When people talk about Cris they forget what he has done. Come on, don’t forget, because he knows what she’s done. But I would always like him on my team. Cristiano still has rope to play at the highest level.
Q. Of the new generation strikers, who would you have liked to face?
R. Only Mbapp and Haaland have been missing, I think. Vinicius no. I would have liked to play against them, yes.
Q. With Courtois, the Ballon d’Or debate for the goalkeepers has come up again…
R. I’m very sorry, but I don’t believe in it. The goalkeeper is not given importance and there have been moments in which some teammates have deserved that Ballon d’Or. Now the Yashin award has been created, but you should have done it long before.
Q. Are you going to see the players?
R. I don’t believe, I don’t believe. Players also want to be calm.
Q. But you are Casillas!
R. [Risas] Now… Let’s see, if Arconada or Gordillo came in my time I would have been delighted, but in the end the master has his talks, his moments, his agenda and you have to leave them alone.
Q. Do they keep calling you Saint on the street?
R. H.H. People keep looking at you, asking for photos… Our generation will never stop being with the people, because what we did marked a lot of people.