Barcelona: Reina pleased with ongoing talk

Pepe Reina Napoli

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Pepe Reina admits it is flattering to be linked with a club like Barcelona but made it clear that, for now at least, he is focused on doing well for Napoli.

The 31-year-old made the move to Naples on loan from parent club Liverpool in the summer transfer window – after it became clear he would have to wait for his chance to return to old club Barca for at least another year – and has impressed during his spell at the Stadio San Paolo.

The Spain international was persuaded to make the move by former Reds’ boss Rafael Benitez, who took charge of the Serie A outfit in the summer.

And the Madrid-born custodian confessed that he is loving the life in Naples and was delighted to have made the switch after eight years on Merseyside.

“I am super happy,” he said. “It was a decision on the rebound but so far at both a sporting and family level everything is going better than expected.”

Victor Valdes has informed the Barcelona management that he will be leaving the Nou Camp after 11 years at the end of the current campaign, and it is one of his rivals for the Spain shirt that has been touted as a possible replacement next season.

The Catalans have been watching Reina’s performaces for Napoli and have been impressed with what they have seen, and the former Villarreal shot-stopper admits that the thought of being under the Barca microscope can only improve his game.

“Of course, for any player it is a compliment when a big club continue to analyse your work, if it is so,” he added. “It is nice and it encourages you to keep working well.”

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