Iker Casillas breaks Xavi's Champions League appearance record
Porto goalkeeper Iker Casillas has broken the Champions League appearance record by playing his 152nd game in the competition after being named in the starting XI to face Chelsea.
Casillas, 34, left Real Madrid for Porto this summer, having made his debut in the Champions League for Los Blancos at the age of 18 on Sept. 15, 1999 in the 3-3 draw with Olimpiakos.
The goalkeeper had been called up to Madrid's squad as a 16-year-old for the game against Rosenborg in Novermber 1997, after an injuries to first-team keepers Bodo Illgner and Santiago Canizares, but Canizares later recovered in time to play in the match.
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE APPEARANCES
Iker Casillas - 152 - FC Porto, Real Madrid
Xavi Hernandez - 151 - Barcelona
Raul Gonzalez - 142 - Schalke, Real Madrid
Ryan Giggs - 141 - Manchester United
Clarence Seedorf - 125 - AC Milan, Real Madrid, Ajax
Having won the competition three times in 2000, 2002 and 2014, Casillas is now participating in his 17th consecutive European campaign and equalled former Barcelona midfielder Xavi's tally of 151 earlier this month in the 2-2 draw away to Dynamo Kiev.
Before Casillas equalled the record, Xavi -- now playing in Qatar for Al Sadd -- paid tribute to his international teammate and long-time rival.
"Iker and I have shared everything since everything since we were 16, 17," he said. "Him at Real Madrid, our all-time rival, and me at Barcelona. It's a privilege to have him as a colleague, friend and role model."