Liverpool Transfer News: Pepe Reina Expects to Be Offloaded as Reds Raise Funds

Tom Sunderland@@TomSunderland_Featured ColumnistFebruary 18, 2014

Pepe Reina has admitted he doesn't expect to remain a Liverpool player past this summer, but has added that he's unsure whether his temporary spell with Napoli will be made permanent.

The Spaniard has been on loan at the Stadio San Paolo for the past six months, but it remains unclear as to whether Rafa Benitez's side will tie down the 31-year-old on longer terms.

Speaking to Piuenne television (h/t ESPN), Reina said he's happy with how things are, but no decision has been made regarding his future past the 2013-14 campaign:

I'm very happy here and my family's happy too. I'll be here right to the end, but not even I know what will happen after. I'm here now, but I've got to return to Liverpool, although it's unlikely I'll stay there.

Benitez was the most important figure in me arriving here. He convinced me to join this ambitious project at a great club. Obviously I also wanted to get to know a different league while it was Liverpool who took the first step by not wanting me anymore because they were placing their faith in a younger goalkeeper.

ESPN's report claims that as long as Benitez is the man in charge of the Naples club, Reina expects to be the player his countryman wants in between the sticks next season.

It's difficult to imagine Reina jostling for playing time alongside Simon Mignolet, the man brought in to replace him at Anfield.

Both goalkeepers will have a certain expectation in terms of playing time and Reina's comments wouldn't appear to suggest he took too kindly to the way his loan departure from the Merseyside outfit came about.

Brendan Rodgers' lack of January business was as clear a sign as any that Liverpool are looking to move away from the splurge-heavy days of the past, with a more stringent, sell-to-buy policy now looking more probable.

With that being the case, Reina could very well be one of those floated in order to acquire funds for further squad improvements.

However, boyhood club Barcelona won't be one of those signing the veteran, according to CNN's Tancredi Palmeri:

Per Transfermarkt, Reina has made 17 Serie A appearances for Napoli this season, keeping five clean sheets in the process.

Another factor worth taking into account is the fact that Napoli also signed former Santos stopper Rafael last summer, heralded as one of South America's finest goalkeeping prospects at the time of his Brazil exit.

Reina's contract with the Reds runs until the summer of 2016, meaning there's not a desperate need for Liverpool to cash in just yet and another loan departure could be on the cards for next season. 

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