Reina puts Alisson 'up there with the best'
Goalkeeper Alisson is "up there with the best" in world football, according to former Liverpool star Pepe Reina. Brazil international Alisson has enjoyed an outstanding first season at Anfield, keeping 20 clean sheets in a Premier League title challenge and helping the Reds to the Champions League semi-finals.
And Reina, a popular keeper at Liverpool from his own time on Merseyside, believes the 26-year-old has shown that he deserves to be ranked among the elite. "I think [Alisson] is up there with the best in this moment," AC Milan's Reina told Liverpool's official website. "I think he's a very good keeper and he managed to dominate the different areas of the goalkeeping role.
"The numbers are there, the performances are there and he's proved himself in his first season in England. It is not easy to be one of the best from the beginning. "It's a mix of things - he's quick, he's strong, he has the ability to dominate the game with his vision. The defence, I think, feel that he's a big figure behind them."
Reina twice previously matched Alisson's tally of 20 league clean sheets, but the current Liverpool keeper has the opportunity to set a new club record in the Premier League era. World Cup winner Reina would be happy to see Alisson do so. "I'm fancying him to do it," he said. "Although he's played more games than me, because I think I played 32 or 33 games to complete 20 clean sheets and he's played 36.
"But still it's a great achievement. I'm looking forward to it. If it's Saturday against Newcastle, good. If it's the last game of the league, even better if that means Liverpool is the Premier League champion. "It's the goalkeepers' union, as we say. We have mutual respect for each other and I admire him because he's not just a goalkeeper but a great goalkeeper in a club that I love."