Barcelona claim Victor Valdes will see out the final year of his contract.
The 31-year-old has spent his entire professional career at the Camp Nou, and has been the first choice goalkeeper since 2003. Valdes is on the verge of claiming his sixth league title for the Catalans, and has also helped them to three UEFA Champions League wins.
However, the Spanish international is out of contract in the summer of 2014, and he has decided against signing a new deal. Instead, it is believed he has set his sights on a move to England, where he is said to be a target for both Arsenal and Liverpool.
This has led to Barca being linked with a number of potential replacements, the latest of which is Internazionale ace Samir Handanovic. But the La Liga giants claim Valdes will not be sold when the window reopens and will instead remain at the club next season, which gives them more time to find a new number one choice.
“We have plenty of time,” vice-president Josep Maria Bartomeu told Catalunya Radio. “We don’t need a Valdes replacement immediately as he’s told us that he will leave in 2014. We consider Valdes to be the best goalkeeper in the world, but he doesn’t want to stay.”
As well as Handanovic, Barca have been linked with Liverpool’s Pepe Reina, who played 30 times for La Blaugrana during a two-year stint from 2000-2002. Former Atletico Madrid ace David De Gea, now of Manchester United, has also been mentioned as a potential target.