Shishkovski, Velkovski train with Udinese

Darko Velkovski and Damjan ShishkovskiRabotnichki’s duo of goalkeeper Damjan Shishkovski and midfielder Darko Velkovski are currently on trial with Udinese after receiving an invitation by the Italian club.

The young goalkeeper Damjan Shishkovski has been in the city of Udine since the 13th of January, while yesterday he was joined by Darko Velkovski. Both are attending training sessions and Udinese’s coaching staff will ultimately decide whether to extend offers.  Both players are eligible to play for the Udinese Primavera team, but the absence of an EU passport could prove an obstacle.  There are quotas in Italy limiting the number of non-EU players that teams can sign.  For that reason, teams usually choose to sign players who are able to contribute immediately as opposed to younger and unproven players.  Many Macedonian footballers, to overcome the fact that Macedonia is not in the EU, try to obtain passports from another EU member so they don’t count as non-EU players.

Udinese invests a lot of resources in its youth academy.  They usually prefer signing 10 young talents as opposed to dolling out big money for a single player.  Their belief is that the numbers game will eventually result in some youngsters panning out, and then they can make a profit when selling them later.

Rabotnichki and Udinese have done business in the past as Stole Dimitrievski moved from Skopje to Udine two years ago for a reported transfer fee of €600.000. Stole is still owned by Udinese, but he currently finds himself on loan to Spanish side Granada. Udinese and Granada actually have the same owner, so they do a lot of business to help one another.

Both Shishkovski and Velkovski are 18 years old. Damjan is regarded as one of the most promising goalkeepers and is currently a member of the U19 national team, while Darko has been on the radar for some time now and has played for all of Macedonia’s youth national teams, including the U21 squad.  In the two November qualifiers last year, Velkovski scored one goals apiece in the matches against Azerbaijan U21 and Norway U21.

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