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Reyna named New York City FC Director of Football Operations

ClaudioReynaNYCFC (ManchesterCity)

Claudio Reyna’s relationship with Manchester City just came full circle.

The English Premier League club announced on Wednesday at a press conference in Manhattan that the former City and U.S. Men’s National Team midfielder is the new Director of Football Operations for Major League Soccer’s newest team, New York City FC.

“Having had the privilege of playing both for my country here in the US and for Manchester City FC in England, I could not have hoped for a more tailored-made opportunity in soccer,” Reyna said in a statement. “I am incredibly excited to again wear City’s ‘Sky Blue’ as part of the expansion of the MLS and the growth of soccer in the United States, and am honored to have been offered this opportunity.

“With a large fan base through the New York area, prime television rights and distribution, sponsorship commitments, and the Yankees as a US partner, the New York City Football Club has everything in place to succeed.”

The New Jersey native, who made 87 appearances at Manchester City between 2002-2007, was most recently the U.S. Youth Soccer Technical Director, overseeing the numerous youth national teams representing the United States at international tournaments.

What do you make of this news? Excited about the Reyna hiring? Do you see any other New York area soccer legends joining the front office?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Since some seriously deep pockets backing this project, I say think outta the box: build a temporary floating stadium for the first two seasons — dock that baby at several points in Manhattan and the 5 boroughs throughout the season. It would be a sensation in terms of building a stadium with lots of wow factor and it would bring the team to the fans throughout the region.

    • It would be memorable and larger than life. My thoughts immediately went to the Gangs of New York scene of boxing on a barge. You could alter the plans a bit from the Whitecaps temporary stadium. Definitely out of the box.

  2. ManCity and NY ties for Renya; not surprised to see him involved. I hope they start their youth system asap so in their first 3-5 years they might be able to get some HGP on the roster.

    I doubt that is their logo but a play on the NY Subway graphics is a good idea…

  3. Unrelated but I found this interesting: Is Major League Soccer selling its soul?

    It’s not Sheikh Mansour’s wealth that is problematic, especially now that MLS and NYC FC appear to be backing away from a proposal to build a 25,000-seat soccer stadium in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park. Rather, it’s the human rights record in the UAE. The U.S. State Department’s 2012 Report on Human Rights Practices detailed how the country makes arbitrary arrests and criminalizes same-sex activity.

    It is the UAE’s maltreatment of its LGBT community that has left MLS open to charges of hypocrisy. The league has launched a public service campaign titled “Don’t Cross the Line” in which fans are encouraged to practice inclusiveness regardless of race, religion, or sexual orientation.

    The league has been very vocal in trying to lure former Columbus Crew midfielder Robbie Rogers, who announced that he is gay last February and then retired, back into the league. It has also taken the unusual step of suspending players for the on-field use of gay slurs. It’s almost as if the league is saying, “Don’t cross the line, unless you have $100 million”.

    • At first I definitely was on board with the announcement and ready to embrace the positive growth (especially the Yankee angle*), but now looking at where the money is coming from it isn’t so clean. An energy drink is truly tacky at best, but human rights violations is a whole other can of worms.

      *The Yankee angle: The way I see it is perhaps Mets fans could jump on the RBNY team just because NYCFC has Yankee ties. I wouldn’t be surprised if I were completely wrong though and go straight to supporting the Cosmos in the NASL.

      New Yorkers are interesting and seem to have more of a city-state complex. I shutter when I hear complaints of taking trains or busses over 45 minutes, when so many fans have to travel well over 2 hours to watch a game (2 1/2 – 3 hours for myself).

      It would seem NYCFC will usurp the Galaxy as MLS fan’s favorite team to hate.

    • The USA used to make arbitrary arrests and same-sex activity was criminal in some places until as recently as 2003. Let’s not forget that.
      Unless the Shiek is demanding, like some people, that his money doesn’t support anything he doesn’t approve of personally (like the “Don’t cross the line” campaign), I don’t see hypocrisy on behalf of the MLS.

      • I’m really just waiting or ChiTown to weigh in since he’s the moral authority on all things MLS/LGBT.

    • I don’t know all the ins and outs about how the UAE has or hasn’t treated the LGBT community or Monsour’s stance. But I do know his wife, who’s name I am blanking on, is/was the President of the Dubai Women’s Establishment, which has long advocated for equal women’s rights in society, sport, political, and economics in the Middle East. Not saying it’s a given but one would have to assume Monsour is sensitive and respectful towards equality unlike more of his constituents.

  4. This is a mistake. Using this as a vehicle to promote Manchester City immediately cuts out a huge chunk of Manchester United supporters as possible NYCFC supporters.

    Stupid Manc-ees.

    • On the other hand, I had zero interest in the Man City angle…but immeidately became intriqued by the Yankee angle. So, win some, lose some.

      beside, annoying Man U supporters is something i can get behind

      • Ugh. I don’t mind the Man City affiliation, but I’m a Mets fan and don’t know if I can get behind anything remotely Yankee-related.

    • What percentage of NYC 10 million population are ManU fans compared to soccer fans in general? ManCity owners have deep pockets that can fund a nice stadiums, DP’s and marketing. The move makes alot of sense.

      • Sadly if you asked 10 Americans who follow the EPL who their favorite team is I would venture to say 4-5 would say United. When people are picking their teams for the first time they generally are drawn to success

      • Are most of them die-hard fans like the ones in England? Or are most casual fans that will be excited to see soccer right of front of their doorstep? You also have many Latin American soccer fans in NYC that don’t have strong allegiance to the BPL or Manchester United.

      • You also have many Latin American soccer fans in NYC that have absolutely zero interest in MLS but will spend hundreds of dollars and drive miles to see a C- team from their home country play a meaningless friendly.

      • Some Latin American fans have no interest in MLS while others are very interested. Red Bull Arena is filled with Latin American fans.

      • Disagree! This ised to be the case at the start of MLS, but unfortunately, I feel like latinos have turned away form the league here in NY. Even with Marquez here, very ew Mexican fans cared

      • I agree with Vic. A lot of Man Utd fans I have seen here in NYC are casual front-runners. I think they would have no issue supporting a viable NY franchise that was marketed correctly.

      • Fair enough, but are those 4 or 5 people such intense Man U fans that they’d never support a City-owned MLS team? I doubt their allegiance runs that deep.

    • I hate Arsenal with a passion. I have been a lifelong Spurs fans stemming from my London born grandparents. However, my love for Spurs and hatred towards Arsenal does not in any way, shape, or form alienate me from loving, supporting, and being a STH for the Colorado Rapids. It has zero impact. Even if our owner is more interested in Arsenal; the Rapids team store sells Arsenal gear; the stadium has an Arsenal crest inside, and we fire off a cannon before games. I can separate Arsenal and the Rapids. It’s not hard. At the end of the day, supporting my local club is far more important that dwelling of the fact it’s owned by someone who is affiliated (owns) part of a club that I absolutely despise.

      • Opps forgot to reply to a particular post! Anyway, if you are wondering my response is in regards to a poster stating Man City’s ownership could alienate NYCFC’s potential fan base who are Man United supporters.

      • Maybe you can, and maybe most people can, but there will be both Yankees and United fans who can’t. I’m not saying they’ll lose every United/Met supporter, but they will lose some. Not smart.

    • I was thinking the same thing. If you are going to play in the Bronx intitally (Yankee Stadium) it doesn’t make sense to go out to Queens after getting established.

    • That would be spectacular. Every train goes there and the neighborhood is great with bars and restaurants and everything. This would be amazing. too good to be true.

      • You are right. The location is beyond perfect given Austin Street, the LIIR and 4 subway lines right there (although this is a residential neighborhood and I’m certain some neighbors wouldn’t think so), but I don’t think the site is big enough for a 25,000 seat stadium and parking.

      • right now old main tennis stadium hold’s 15,000, if they take entire land, save the clubs house get the tennis club to move, built parking off site, it is workable. I bet the stadium will be built in Forest Hills tennis club. Keep in mind they tried to landmark the stadium, Commission denied application because the stadium was beyond repair. They are currently trying to get it on the National registry, the club has $0 to renovate

      • entire site is 142 acres. They tried selling for condo development recently cause they cannot afford renovation.

      • great neighborhood, but I don’t think that site could hold the stadium and parking. On top of that, it is VERY residential.

      • Jersey IS NOT better than queens :). All kidding aside, I want to see how this turns out. I have a feeling that there will be a lot of learning on the job for Reyna, but surround him with the right people and he should be ok.

      • You kidding me? Even as a former Brooklynite, I’d take Sunnyside, Astoria, Corona and Flushing over any ‘hood in Joisy

    • Not really. When he was here, we complained about how useless he was for us. Maybe NYCFC can hire Youri Djorkaeff as well…

    • I’m not thrilled about this. He has a great background but not great experience. I’d rather see a proven guy in this role. Maybe he’ll more of a figure head who will learn on the job under a more experienced guy?

    • I personally would not agree with people making this argument against Reyna for the NYRB job. In regards to NYCFC, I think it holds even less weight. Reyna is from the area, has experience playing at the highest levels for both club and country, has experience in MLS’ unique structure, and has headed up US Soccer’s youth development program for the last few years (which I think is a huge plus considering Man City’s focus on their academy and youth development back in England). The fact that NYCFC has 18 months before their first game also subtracts from the experience argument. Granted, he’s going to be making personnel decisions in that time, but there won’t be the pressure of making personnel decisions for a team that is currently playing and looking to win now. I think Man City will give him every resource to get his feet under him.

      I think it’s the perfect hire.

      • That is very true. I guess it just depends on what his duties as ‘Director of Football” entail.

        If he’s going to be an all powerful general manager type that controls all player acquisitions, team affairs, stadium and training affairs, etc. then he very well could be in over his head.

        However, if he’s going to be more of a technical director and go-between for the coaching staff and the board, responsible for the overall footballing direction of the club (advising on acquisitions, and overseeing youth development), then I think his previous experiences lend themselves perfectly to the position.

        I have a hard time believing the astute businessmen who run Man City and the Yankees are going to hand the reins of the entire operation over to Reyna.

    • Ummm, no. Everybody was ecstatic when reports had Reyna as joining RBNY and devastated when he surprisingly turned down the role.

      • An added bonus is that Reyna’s hire is a big slap in Red Bulls’s face, given that Reyna declined Red Bulls’ coaching job.

      • A director of football opperations for a team that doesn’t exist yet. Will he keep the job once they start doing stuff or is this like the Cosmo’s positions various people have held. Isn’t Cobi Jones over in the cosmos setup now too?

  5. I think this was a great great signing for nycfc. I was raised in brooklyn and staten island and am a big time redbull fan and also a huge yankees fan and man city fan. It will be a whole lotta fun when this team gets going and gets their own stadium. It think this was a no brainer and kudos to don garber for making it happen. I am a redbull fan but for how long we shall see? 🙂

  6. So there are going to be two “Sky Blue” MLS teams, and zero purple or black and white? I mean, it only makes sense, but really?

      • Yeah, Colorado wants their sky blue back!

        Also, what size shirt are those two men holding in that picture? XXXL? Trust me, that is just wrong, you can’t find an MLS shirt in XXL most places and they have them for props?

    • they say they havent committed to any colors or designs for kits yet, personally I hope they dont go with the sky blue. Use the colors of the NYC flag, blue white and orange.

      • Except those are the Mets’ colors. I have a feeling the Yankees would object. Unfortunately, combining City’s and Yankees’ colors leads you directly to SKC (light blue and dark blue).

      • Funny we can have all the red (Chicago, Toronto, Portland away, DC’s 3rd) and blue (Montreal, Vancouver, LA, SKC home!) we want but god forbid two teams play in sky blue.


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