Pepe Reina: Liverpool icon played in midfield vs Kaiserslautern in 2006

Pepe Reina

Pepe Reina was – and still is – very good with the ball at his feet.

He would no doubt have fancied himself to perform outfield and he got the opportunity to do so in a pre-season friendly for Liverpool 15 years ago.

On July 30, 2006, Rafael Benitez’s side travelled to Liechtenstein to play Kaiserslautern.

The game did not go to plan for Liverpool, though.



The Reds were drawing 2-2 when Luis Garcia and Fabio Aurelio went down with injuries with 15 minutes remaining.

Liverpool had a dilemma as they had already used all of their substitutes.

Robbie Fowler was allowed to return to the pitch after coming off earlier. Instead of bringing another player back on, Benitez decided to give Reina a 15-minute run-out in midfield.

Reina was actually pretty lively after making his bow.

Pepe Reina

He had the chance to be the hero for his side as he had a golden opportunity after Craig Bellamy’s cut-back.

Reina was only 10 yards out but he couldn’t get his effort on target as the ball flew over the bar.

Liverpool’s coaching staff couldn’t help but laugh as Reina’s effort failed to test the opposition goalkeeper.

Reina leapt high for a header shortly after. You can view that header at 6:55 in the below video.

Unfortunately for Reina, his missed chance proved costly as Kaiserslautern scored a late winner themselves.

Reina spoke to the media after the game.

“I had one really good chance to score, but now I know how difficult it is to score,” he said afterwards, per PlanetFootball.

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“Playing in midfield was the last solution because we had used all our substitutes. It’s not normal for things like that to happen, but I had to do it.”

Unsurprisingly, Reina never got the chance to play outfield for Liverpool again.

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