Pepe Reina said after Spain’s 1-0 defeat to South Africa that the injury to Victor Valdes was more cause for concern than the loss itself.
Valdes was forced to leave the field in the second half after sustaining a calf injury, and with La Roja having used all six substitutes it appeared defender Alvaro Arbeloa would be required to take over the No 1 jersey.
However, the referee informed Spain boss Vicente del Bosque he would be allowed to send on third-choice ‘keeper Reina, although it provoked a touchline row with South Africa boss Gordon Igesund.
Nonetheless, speaking after the game Reina was more worried about Valdes than the unexpected reverse to the Bafana Bafana.
“Forget that we have lost. It’s more important how Victor is. I hope his injury is not serious,” the Napoli stopper told reporters, before commenting on the furore his replacement of Valdes provoked.
“If we are talking about sportsmanship and common sense then it’s normal that a goalkeeper who hasn’t been involved goes on.
“It’s nothing more than that, fair play and common sense,” he argued.