Victor Valdes has admitted that whilst he would like to see out his career at Barcelona, he is not adverse to leaving the club should he not sign a new deal.
The goalkeeper is in negotiations to renew his contract beyond its June 2014 expiry, but unlike teammates Cristian Tello, Lionel Messi, Xavi Hernandez and Carles Puyol, has yet to reach an agreement.
“Since I signed the last contract I have not spoken about it. I signed the last one in June 2009 and have not been concerned since,” he told reporters today.
“It is not the time for me to be worrying about it, there is still time. I’m focused on winning games. My dream is to retire here…time will tell.
“I have spent 11 years here and as goalkeeper it is difficult in many ways. I do not rule out other cultures, other football, other countries, we will see.”
The ‘keeper has received criticism for his form this season after some indifferent performances and he was asked about this today, as well as his view on international teammate Iker Casillas’ recent role as a substitute for Real Madrid.
“The doubts? It does not surprise me. I have always been doubted. It is always there. Our position is very easy to criticise and here I have seen all colours. But I’ve always said that only the goalkeeper can say if he is below level.
“Casillas? I do not know the Coach’s reasons, he will know. All I can say from here is that Casillas has my full support and I hope that soon again he will be in goal, that is where I like to watch him play.”
Valdes is struggling with a foot injury and was expected to miss the weekend’s derby with Espanyol. However, he has promised to try and make the game and even so, he is looking forward to the encounter.
“I ended the Valladolid game in a lot of discomfort. The problem is still there, but it is being treated. I trust I will be able to play the derby.
“It is always an important game, at home or at Cornella-El Prat, especially for the fans and for us as homegrown players, we are used to dealing with Espanyol. It is three vital points available, the League is not yet over.
“We have not even finished the first half of the season. It is true that we have a good distance over second and third, but it is not over. There is a long time to still play and a lot of points to play for.”
Barcelona welcomed back Tito Vilanova to oversee training this week less than two weeks after surgery on one of his salivary glands, whilst defender Eric Abidal is back to full training after undergoing a liver transplant in 2012.
“They are both examples throughout. As people overcoming and as our teammate and Coach. They are role models for us. Not only for what they have overcome, but because they give everything for this team. They give us a lot of strength and energy.”