Goalkeeper wants out of Anfield.
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Pepe Reina has told Roy Hodgson he wants to leave Liverpool – possibly as early as January.
Mirror Sport has reported that Manchester United, Arsenal and Inter Milan are interested in the goalkeeper and now he has made it clear to Hodgson and the Liverpool board he wants to go.
Hodgson has tried to persuade the keeper who has a £20 million buy-out clause in his contract to stay, but is now looking at possible replacements.
Top of his list are Germany international stopper Manuel Neuer, and Ajax number one Maarten Stekelenburg, who was the Holland keeper in the World Cup final.
Reina currently commands a salary of almost £100,000 a week, over the course of a contract which has four and a half years left to run. He is 28, and if Liverpool are to get money back on him, would have to sell now.
It is unlikely a bid at such a massive price – which would then invoke the clause in Reina’s contract – will materialise in January, but even if he has to wait until the summer, it seems clear the Spanish keeper will force a move away from Anfield.
He has become more distracted with life at Anfield and less satisfied in recent months. (Daily Mirr0r)
There are a few things that don’t quite add up in this Daily Mirror story.
The first is that as recently as Tuesday, Pepe Reina said the following: “I will stay at Liverpool at least until the end of the season.”
With no reports of any kind of blazing row – indeed, the Mirror only writes that he has become “distracted with life at Anfield” – it seems unlikely that something could have happened in the last few days to make him want to leave as soon as possible.
Indeed, though the quotes on Tuesday were read as a threat to exit, one might argue it was merely a question of ambition. Reina wants to play at the highest level in club football – the UEFA Champions League.
After all, he said something else that day that casts doubt on this story: “I signed a six-year deal seven months ago and I’m happy at the club, but every footballer wants to be competing for trophies and winning things.”
Just three days ago he said he was happy at the club.
The Daily Mirror decided against including these quotes in their article. Indeed, they elected against including any at all.
With Arsenal retaining faith in their error-prone goalkeepers Manuel Almunia and Lukasz Fabianski – though the latter has certainly improved – and with fine prospect Wojciech Szczesny having just signed a new contract, it seems unlikely Arsene Wenger would move for Reina now, even if they were rumoured to have approached Liverpool in the summer.
Reina has too much respect for Liverpool to move to Manchester United, even if they will soon require a replacement for the ageing Edwin Van Der Sar. He has stated his love for the club and the city on numerous occasions.
The Inter Milan connection makes sense only because of Reina’s excellent relationship with former Reds coach Rafa Benitez, but with Julio Cesar already at the San Siro, why would they buy another goalkeeper?
I wouldn’t read too much into this EXCLUSIVE article yet Liverpool fans.