Dalglish: Reina is number one

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Football News

Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish believes goalkeeper Jose Reina is possibly the best in the world.

The Spain international is set to make his 300th appearance for Liverpool in their Europa League last-16 second leg tie at home to Braga. Keeping a clean sheet will be vital to the Reds' chances of progressing to the quarter-finals and Dalglish has no doubts about the 28-year-old's quality.

"In my opinion Pepe Reina is one of, if not the, best keeper in the world," said the Scot. "I know he doesn't get in his national side, but if it's my opinion you're asking for that would be my shout."

Dalglish added: "He has been fantastic for this football club and is a great asset to us. That is reflected in that if Stevie (Gerrard) or Carra (Jamie Carragher) are not playing, he is our captain."

Liverpool have not lost in 10 European matches at Anfield, drawing just one, since November 2009 and their record in Europa League and UEFA Cup games is even better - their last defeat on home turf came 15 fixtures ago against Celtic in March 2003.

That history should stand them in good stead as they seek to bounce back from their first European defeat in 14 games last week in Portugal, where they lost 1-0.

Their opponents did little to suggest they would be a major threat at Anfield and, although they have won Champions League away matches against Sevilla and Partizan Belgrade in the current campaign, they were thrashed 6-0 by Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium in September.

Dalglish knows how important playing at home in the second leg can be.

"Anfield is always an advantage for us," he said. "Even though we're one down, the fans can help us turn things around, but it's mainly up to us to help ourselves.

"We need to start much better than in the first leg."

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

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Europa League
European News
Jose Reina
Premier League
Kenny Dalglish
UEFA Champions League
Jamie Carragher

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