Barcelona have reportedly been handed a major blow in pursuit of Stole Dimitrievski, with the 28-year-old Rayo Vallecano goalkeeper set to join a club in Qatar.
According to a report by Catalan outlet El Nacional, Stole Dimitrievski will not be joining Barcelona in the ongoing transfer window. The 28-year-old Rayo Vallecano goalkeeper is instead departing La Liga to join a club in Qatar, which will pay him substantially higher wages than those on offer from the Blaugrana.
Stole Dimitrievski took some to find his feet as a reliable goalkeeper, having been a journeyman for most of his career. But since joining Rayo Vallecano from Gimnastic de Tarragona, the North Macedonian goalkeeper has not looked back, going from strength to strength at Estadio de Vallecas.
Now widely regarded as one of the best goalkeepers in La Liga, the 28-year-old has been a key figure in Los Franjirrojos’ surprise bid to clinch a top-four finish. Dimitrievski has kept six clean sheets in 18 league appearances this term, with his exploits getting noticed by several clubs across the world, including Barcelona.
The interest from Barcelona stems from the uncertainties surrounding the future of Neto at Camp Nou. The Brazilian goalkeeper is unsettled at Barcelona as he has failed to garner enough first-team action to his liking. That is why the 32-year-old is keen on leaving Barcelona at the earliest possible opportunity.
Neto has been linked with several clubs in Europe, but recent reports have claimed that he could be set to return to Brazil, with Flamengo keen on signing him. The veteran shot-stopper’s departure will leave Barcelona in need of signing a replacement, especially with Inaki Pena touted to embark on a loan spell to further his development.
Dimitrievski had thus emerged as a target for Barcelona, with recent reports even claiming that they were closing in on securing his services. But there is a twist in the tale, with the 28-year-old set to join a club from Qatar instead.
The North Macedonian goalkeeper has opted to receive a higher salary in Qatar instead of Barcelona’s offer, which might be understandable because this will likely be the final big contract of his career. But failure to sign Dimitrievski will not send Barcelona scrambling, because they will probably promote Arnau Tenas to the backup role once Neto leaves.