Mou under pressure for Casillas decision

Mou under pressure for Casillas decision

BARCELONA - The Associated Press
Mou under pressure for Casillas decision

Real Madrid’s Portuguese coach Jose Mourinho faces backlash after deciding to drop Iker Casillas for last weekend’s match against Malaga. REUTERS photo

Real Madrid President Florentino Perez’s confounded expression upon hearing that veteran goalkeeper Iker Casillas had been dropped for a game against Malaga showed just how far coach Jose Mourinho has gone in his quest to exert control over the club.

And it may be that Mourinho has finally gone too far.

After waves of criticism from fans and players alike as Madrid slumped to a 3-2 loss in the game, the question arises whether Perez has reached the limits of his support for the often successful, yet equally abrasive, Mourinho.

“Mourinho has his particular way of dealing with his squad,” said former Madrid player and coach Jorge Valdano. “But this was him doubling down. It was an exhibition of power. It was him imposing his decision on a club legend.”

A fan poll published yesterday by Spanish sports daily Marca indicates that most of Madrid’s fans want Mourinho out. Eighty-two percent of the almost 100,000 participants in the online poll voted yes to the question “Should Real Madrid fire Mourinho?”

“I’m not used to being a backup,” Casillas told La Sexta television. “But the team is above any player.”