Liverpool: 5 Reasons They Should Resist Selling Pepe Reina
There are bound to be changes in the Liverpool squad as Brendan Rodgers continues to revamp his side.
One player the Reds manager shouldn't let go, besides the obvious in Luis Suarez, Lucas Leiva and a few others, is Pepe Reina.
The Spanish goalkeeper has been linked (via the Metro) with a move to his former club, Barcelona.
A return to Barcelona would certainly be attractive to Reina, given the Spanish side's current situation with Victor Valdes.
In turn, Goal.com reported in December that the Reds were interested in Birmingham City Jack Butland.
If both deals were to occur, Liverpool would gain the services of a player who is believed to have a bright future in the game.
They would lose the experience of Reina but gain the long-term potential of a possible future No. 1 goalkeeper for England.
Here are five reasons Liverpool should resist selling Pepe Reina.
5. Getting Jack Butland Isn't a Given
Liverpool aren't the only suitors for Jack Butland.
With all that interest in Butland it will be hard for Liverpool to sign him.
The young goalkeeper is likely to want regular playing time and may see better options elsewhere considering all the interest he's received.
4. Jack Butland Could Still Use Mentoring If He Joins Liverpool
For all the interest in him and potential he's displayed there's one thing that shouldn't be forgotten about Jack Butland.
He's still only 19.
Butland should not be handed the pressure of a starting role for one of England's biggest clubs at such a young age.
It's possible that he could handle it and progress well, but any negative effects would be detrimental to him and Liverpool.
Pepe Reina has been part of Spain's two European Championship-winning squads and their one World Cup-winning squad.
He's won trophies domestically with Liverpool and in Europe with Villarreal.
While regular playing time certainly goes a long way, Reina's experience would also be a valuable asset to Butland's progression.
That is, if he ends up at the club.
3. He Is Yet to Hit His Prime
"People say goalkeepers reach their best in their 30s, and I am 30 right now, so hopefully my golden days are still waiting for me.”
Pepe Reina said these words and added that his best is yet to come as recounted on Goal.com.
Goalkeepers like Gianluigi Buffon and Edwin van der Sar have gottten better with age, and Reina could certainly follow suit.
The Spaniard has already put in some great performances for the Reds over the years, and one can only imagine what he can do if age doesn't slow him down.
Liverpool would be foolish to let a player go who is yet to hit his prime especially in such an important position as goalkeeper.
2. Few Potential Replacements Would Have Similar Quality to Reina
If Pepe Reina were to leave, Liverpool would be hard pressed to find a goalkeeper of similar quality.
While both keepers certainly have their positive qualities they are not equal to Pepe Reina in terms of experience and skill.
Reina had a slow start to the 2012/13 season but a keeper of his standard is sure to return to his best.
There are few quality goalkeepers who the Reds would currently be able to attract despite the club's history.
The club's transfer kitty should be spent elsewhere as they already have a very solid goalkeeper between the sticks.
1. Pepe Reina Is Still One of the Best Goalkeepers in the EPL
Despite his poor start to the season, Pepe Reina's qualities are still obvious. He's been a consistent presence for Liverpool in the past and has started to return to form in recent times.
In 18 games this season he has seven clean sheets. A number only bettered by goalkeepers who have featured in more games than him.
He's saved one of the four penalties his side have conceded and won 100 percent of his aerial duels.
He's pretty accurate with his passing too, which is something that's necessary in Brendan Rodgers' system.
His pass completion percentage of 75.17 is better than any other keeper in the Premier League. That includes throws and goal kicks.
That high accuracy may be down to Rodgers' preference on starting play from the back, but it's still impressive.
The statistics alone are not all that matter, though, as Reina also brings an experience that is vital to the squad.
*All Statistics courtesy of EPLIndex.com