On This Day - 2005 - Liverpool sign Pepe Reina

New Liverpool signing Jose Reina with Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez

Reina would become one of Liverpool's most popular players in recent years.

New Liverpool signing Jose Reina with Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez

Finding a good goalkeeper who you can trust as your number one for many years can be a very hard task, but it is something Liverpool seemed to achieve 11 years ago when Rafa Benitez secured Pepe Reina's services from Villarreal.

The Spaniard was signed in the aftermath of Liverpool's remarkable European Cup triumph over AC Milan where Jerzy Dudek proved himself a hero in the Reds claiming their crown and Reina would prove to be worthy number one. 

In his first season following his £6 million arrival, Reina went on a run from the end of October until late December without conceding a goal in the Premier League - an important run behind the first of his three consecutive golden gloves awards.

He would conclude his first season with a FA Cup final triumph which was a mixed bag in terms of Reina's performance. His mistake led to Dean Ashton putting West Ham two goals up at Cardiff before he was caught out by a Paul Konchesky cross/shot that ended up in the back of the net but Steven Gerrard's stunning strike took that game to extra time.

Liverpool's Jose Reina saves the fourth penalty took by West Hams Anton Ferdinand 2006 FA Cup

Reina would pull off an outstanding save to deny Marlon Harewood before his heroics in the shoot-out. 

The following season would be a difficult, error-strewn start, notably in the Merseyside derby where he handed Andy Johnson a goal after a juggle as Liverpool went down 3-0 to Everton.

His second season would end with Liverpool in the Champions League final, largely down to his penalty shoot-out heroics in the semi-final against Chelsea. He was certainly living up to his reputation as something of a spot-kick king. 

Reina saves Robben's penalty in 2007 Champions League semi-final shoot-out

The following seasons would see Reina keep his place in the side but after the departure of Rafa Benitez in 2010; Reina struggled to find the kind of form that established himself as number one. In 2012 he would be part of the side won the League Cup but he would make an error in the early stages of the FA Cup final defeat to Chelsea, as he was beaten at his near post by Ramires with Liverpool losing 2-1.

After just one season under Brendan Rodgers, Simon Mignolet was brought into the club, with the Ulsterman appearing to not fancy Reina as the club's number one goalkeeper. He was sent on loan to Napoli for a season before a subsequent sale to Bayern Munich. He then rejoined Napoli on a permanent basis. 

Picture Supplied by Action ImagesPicture Supplied by Action Images

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