WATCH: What happened when Pepe Reina played in midfield for Liverpool in 2006 friendly

In Alisson Becker, Liverpool have themselves a goalkeeper with brilliant footwork.

After five years of frustration over the form of Simon Mignolet and Loris Karius, the club forked out a then world-record fee for the Brazilian goalkeeper from AS Roma.

And despite only making a handful of appearances so far, his distribution has proved deadly in the Premier League and many consider him Liverpool’s best number one since Pepe Reina.

The Spanish goalkeeper plied his trade at Liverpool between 2005 and 2014, going onto spend time with Bayern Munich, Napoli and AC Milan upon his departure.

He became something of a fan’s favourite during his time at Anfield and will be forever remembered for his penalty shootout heroics in the 2006 FA Cup final.

That’s not to mention the fact Liverpool’s last trophy – the 2012 League Cup – also called upon some spot kick saves from Reina.

All that considered, Reina must be regarded as the standard that Alisson should aspire to during his time at Liverpool and he can certainly learn something from his footwork.

Yes, really, although Reina didn’t necessary have a massive reputation for his distribution, he once made an appearance for Liverpool as a central midfielder.

We’re not joking. Back in 2006, Rafael Benitez took the decision to substitute on Reina with 15 minutes to go in a pre-season friendly with Kaiserslautern.

When Luis Garcia complained of neck pain during the second-half, Benitez had no choice but to introduce Reina having used all his outfield substitutions.

The score was locked at 2-2 at the time and as soon as the Spanish goalkeeper trotted onto the pitch, he beat a rival midfielder to a header.

Kaiserslautern then took the lead with a goal past Liverpool’s second goalkeeper on the pitch – Jerzy Dudek – before Reina had the chance to take the victory.

However, imagining his name up in lights, he fluffed his lines and skied his effort over the bar.

Take a look at the hilarious moment Reina enters the field (6:33) and his moment to save the day:


What went wrong, Pepe? A goalkeeper would take that kind of shot.

Such was the bizarre nature of the incident, that the press couldn’t resist interviewing Reina at full-time to quiz him on his time in midfield.

The now 35-year-old stated: “I had one really good chance to score but now I know how difficult it is to score.

“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.”

Sadly, that would be the last time that Liverpool fans saw Reina pulling the strings in midfield, but his interesting shooting ability means it was probably for the best.