Fulham have made a £1.3m for Espanyol goalkeeper Roberto Jimenez, according to reports from Spain.
The 32 year-old goalkeeper spent last season on loan with Malaga, keeping six clean sheets in 34 league appearances for the Anchovies, although the club were relegated having finished rock bottom of La Liga. The experienced goalkeeper is likely to leave La Rosaleda this summer as he is deemed surplus to requirements and Malaga are looking to reduce their wage bill ahead of the new season.
Jimenez, a former Spanish under-21 international more commonly known as Roberto, began his career with Atletico Madrid and returned to his first club in 2009. He was part of the Atletico squad that famously reached the Europa League final the following year, although spent the second year of the season helping Real Zaragoza avoid relegation from the La Liga on loan. The goalkeeper then endured a disappointing spell at Benfica, before making a return to Zaragoza as the number one goalkeeper and ensuring the Aragonese stayed up on the final day of the season.
Greek giants Olympiakos signed Roberto on loan in 2013 and the goalkeeper helped the club when back-to-back domestic titles. On the European stage, Roberto turned in an inspired performance to keep a clean sheet against his former club Benfica in the Champions’ League and produced a brilliant display in a 1-0 win over Juventus in the same competition the following year, but Olympiakos failed to get out of the group stages on both occasions.
The Spanish press reports claim that Roberto would be offered the same wage as he currently earns at Espanyol and that he would become Fulham’s number one goalkeeper, usurping academy graduate Marcus Bettinelli ahead of the Whites’ return to the Premier League next month. Fulham are definitely in the market for a new keeper, with David Button having completed a move to Brighton and Hove Albion earlier this evening. It remains to be seen whether both Espanyol and Roberto will agree to the proposed deal – or whether Fulham will look to secure other targets.