Goalkeeping 101 : Pepe Reina’s Blunder Broken Down

Spain’s World Cup goalkeeper PEPE REINA of Liverpool collects the ball ahead of England World Cup striker WAYNE ROONEY of Manchester United during Premier League action at Old Trafford. (Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)

There can be no question that Liverpool goalkeeper PEPE REINA was completely at fault on the play which produced the equalizing goal for Arsenal at Anfield on the opening weekend of play in the English Premier League.

The fumbling of the ball into the net by Spain’s deputy World Cup goalkeeper drew all the attention in the press — what was ignored was the fundamental mistake made by Reina that precipitated and facilitated the tying goal.

As the highlight video below reveals, when the initial ball was played into the box by Arsenal, Reina just stood on his heels inside the six-yard box.

Goalkeepers are taught to always attack the ball and collect it at its highest point on crosses. One thing netminders are admonished never to do is just stand there and wait for the ball to arrive.

The Arsenal player who cut in front of the Liverpool goalkeeper at the last moment provides the clear and simple reason for why that would be.

If Reina, who got caught with his boots nailed to the floor, deals with the initial ball played into the box properly, the chaos that follows never comes about…and Liverpool collect all three points.



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