Pepe Reina has reflected on his role as peacemaker with Spain, talk of a generational change in goal and on Iker Casillas’ ‘natural’ return.
The Liverpool shot-stopper is part of Spain’s Confederations Cup squad and has seen first-hand Casillas’ return to playing action with La Roja after a five-month lay-off with Real Madrid.
“How has he returned to the role? Naturally,” answered Reina to AS today.
“The Coach had to make a decision. Iker had not been playing, but he arrived having trained and was in adequate physical shape.
“Del Bosque had to make a decision and it has been respected, like we have always done.
“Would all three ‘keepers get to play in the group stage? I’d be surprised but that would be nice.
“Hopefully we can each play and everyone can enjoy the Confederations Cup. But it would be unusual.”
David de Gea’s time with the Spanish Under-21s is coming to an end and he is seen as likely to push Reina for a place at senior level.
“My dream is to reach the World Cup and perhaps further, but there are great people behind me and it is normal to talk about generational changes.
“What I have clear is that I will fight for my position to the limit and if beyond 2014, even better.”
Reina is seen as a strong member of the Spanish dressing room for his interpersonal skills with the others.
“In all groups it is necessary for motivation. Not everything can be a bed of roses, peace and harmony. It is impossible that you can get along with everyone, but it is not impossible that you can respect yourself.
“The camaraderie and respect is nonnegotiable. In the difficult times we have come together and we have said that we will do this for us and for our country, and from that you are seeing the results.
“Can we win the World Cup? It is very difficult. It was very difficult to win the European Championship, World Cup and European Championship and we have done that. Now we are aiming for the Confederations Cup, even if winning two Euros in a row and the World Cup too is something that has not been done.
“We are aware of what we will come across next year. We will come with the hope of retaining the title, but it will be very complicated.”