Spain were in disarray this summer. From winning the 2008 and 2012 European Championships and the 2010 World Cup, Spain crashed out of the 2014 World Cup in the group stage, losing 5-1 to the Netherlands and 2-0 to Chile to become the first team eliminated in Brazil.
It was quite the fall from grace, and it's led to the likes of Xabi Alonso, Xavi and David Villa retiring, with manager Vicente del Bosque now handing chances to some newer players like Juan Bernat, Koke and Paco Alcacer.
Yet, despite a horrific spell over the last two years, goalkeeper Iker Casillas kept his place. The Real Madrid stopper had lost his place in goal to Diego Lopez under Jose Mourinho and then Carlo Ancelotti, but somehow kept his place in goal for Spain at the World Cup and even in the recent Euro 2016 qualifier against Slovakia.
However, the errors appear to have gone on long enough for del Bosque, who decided to drop Casillas in favour of Manchester United stopper David de Gea, who was not only the Red Devils' player of the year last season, but has enjoyed a superb start to the new season under Louis van Gaal - and he kept a clean sheet in his runout, albeit against Luxembourg.
Now 33, Casillas must be aware that De Gea is close to becoming Spain's first choice goalkeeper, and he admitted that he can't go on forever for Spain.
"I'm not immortal," Casillas said. "I will not last forever. Everybody has to make their own decision about when to leave the national team, but I feel good, strong and with the desire to help my country do the best we can to be in France and to win the tournament, which isn't going to be easy."