Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Liverpool’s Benitez & Gerrard Hail Pepe Reina

Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez and skipper Steven Gerrard have hailed goalkeeper Pepe Reina.

The 25-year-old, who is an understudy to first-choice Iker Casillas in Spain side, played an important role in the Reds’ first goal that came from Fernando Torres in the hard-fought 2-0 win over Fulham on Saturday.

Benitez said on the club’s official website: "Reina is a goalkeeper with real game intelligence. He can read the game and play the kind of balls he delivered to Torres. He can play these passes to strikers if strikers move for the ball.

"A modern goalkeeper needs to be able to read the game like this. That is the difference.

"You can save 100 balls, but if you don't do something more you will be a good goalkeeper – not a top class goalkeeper."

Gerrard added: "He doesn't just kick it upfield and give us 50-50 balls. He passes it out from the back. He's a quality goalie."

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