Lazio goalkeeper Pepe Reina discussed his time with the Biancocelesti so far, the Spanish national team and his future in an interview with Spanish media outlet Cadena SER earlier today.
“The coach was clear with me when we spoke. These are different and particular seasons in which there are many games. And you have to be prepared for what happens, like now.
“The draw with Juve? A difficult challenge because we have a lot of players absent. But this team never gives up. The derby against Roma? They remind you immediately.”
He spoke about potentially be called back to the Spanish national team.
“I think about it, but nothing has materialized. The Spanish culture sees a 38-year-old player as very old, it is not like here in Italy.
“In Spain they think of you as an old player. The starter must be De Gea anyway, he is the most prepared and experienced one. But there are many good goalkeepers.”
The 38-year-old Spaniard touched on his debut back in 2000 and how he does not even think of retiring.
“It has been 20 wonderful years, I look back and feel lucky. Everything happens quickly. But I don’t think about retirement.
“When I have clear ideas and the intention to quit and I still have six or seven months left in my career, I will call someone to give me a hand. I want to prepare myself psychologically for that day.”
Finally, Reina spoke about his future after retirement and how his reduced role at Lazio is helping him prepare for that.
“I will be a coach. I will miss football and life will change. I will take a sports psychologist or a specialist course. My family is there to support me, but I will need a little help. Playing less helps you to quit. There are players who retire in a World Cup final like Zidane.
“I started regularly three years ago, then I went to Milan. After that I played with satisfaction at Aston Villa. Now at Lazio I don’t play every match and you have to get used to the idea.”
The 38-year-old Reina, who is contracted to the Biancocelesti until 2022, has made five appearances across all competitions so far this season, for a total of 450 minutes. In that time, he’s conceded seven goals and failed to keep a clean sheet.
Lazio are currently 9th in Serie A after seven games, sitting three points behind rivals Roma, who are in 4th. The Biancocelesti’s next game is against newly promoted Crotone on the 21st November, after the international break.