Reina ‘œone of world’s best’ says Benitez

Rafa Benitez believes Liverpool goalkeeper Pepe Reina is among the best goalkeepers in the world and deserves to be praised more.

Reina could earn himself the Premier League golden glove award on Sunday if he keeps a clean sheet in the Reds’ final game of the season at home to Tottenham. Only Edwin van der Sar currently has more clean sheets, and the Dutch ‘˜keeper could be rested by Manchester United this weekend, with the Champions League final in mind.

Benitez has sung the praises of Reina, who was signed in the summer of 2006 from Villarreal, saying his consistency at being a fantastic shotstopper makes him as good as any of the big name ‘˜keepers.

“In England people talked about Petr Cech, and now van der Sar, but Pepe for three or four years now has been at a really good level,” Benitez told the club’s official web site.

“This consistency makes him a top-class goalkeeper. I would say he is one of the best ‘keepers in the world now. When we signed him I said he was the best in Spain and Iker Casillas was doing really well too.

“Our fans know he’s really important, and some journalists also. If they know about football, they can see the difference between Pepe and the other ‘keepers.”