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Gregg Berhalter yet to speak with Gio Reyna ahead of USMNT return


Gregg Berhalter is less than two weeks from being back on the sidelines as head coach of the U.S. men’s national team and although much of his focus will be on improving the current squad in September friendlies, another main issue will be resolving his relationship with a rising attacking talent.

Gio Reyna remains a rising talent in the USMNT squad, who very well could miss out on September international duty due to a lack of fitness. The Borussia Dortmund attacker recently only returned to training in Germany and overall has yet to appearance for the Bundesliga club this season.

Berhalter has yet to speak to Reyna following last year’s dispute during the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar, a dispute which led to Reyna playing only 52 minutes for the USMNT during its four matches in the tournament.

After Berhalter’s original contract expired in December, the 50-year-old was re-hired as USMNT boss and now prepares for his second spell in charge of the program. Reyna’s long-term potential remains clear and Berhalter is ready on connecting strongly once again with him whenever that time comes.

“We started this process of how to set expectations a little and figure out how we’re going to move forward together,” Berhalter said of his relationship with Reyna in an interview with Vanity Fair.

“Some of it will involve him, some of it will involve us, and eventually, hopefully, it leads towards Gio being comfortable in the team, comfortable that he’s being evaluated fairly and coached fairly and held to the same norms and standards as everybody else,” Berhalter added.

Reyna delivered a Man of the Match performance for the USMNT in his last international appearance, registering two assists in a 2-0 Concacaf Nations League Finals win over Canada last June. However, Reyna has yet to take the field for club or country in competitive action since then due to a calf injury suffered in that international showdown with the Canadians.

Borussia Dortmund’s final match before the international break comes on Friday against FC Heidenheim before the USMNT faces Uzbekistan and Oman on home soil in a pair of friendlies. Should Reyna not be deemed fit enough to head back to the United States, his next opportunity to work with Berhalter would come during the October FIFA window where Germany and Ghana square off with the Americans.


  1. 3G is smart but not wise. 3G HAS spoken with most of the other players. 3G hasn’t spoken with Gio. 3G HAS spoken to the media about Gio. If he has consulted with mediation experts he doesn’t appear to have learned any lessons. How hard would it have been to have picked up the phone before that interview and say, “Gio, I know we haven’t spoken, but I’m going to be giving interviews leading into the next window for friendlies and I’m sure the topic of our relationship is going to come up. How would you like me to handle it? This is what I propose…”

    The first step in mediation is the parties establish a few ground rules, 2 then listen to what the other person is saying, making sure they understand the issues from the other’s perspective and 3 then they start looking for common goals that you can both agree on. 3G made a lame attempt at number 2 “we both want to win the world cup!” (yeah you and 3 billion other people) after jumping right over setting a few ground rules and the listening to each other part.

    The point is 3G was given expert advice, likely absorbed none of it but more likely purposely subverted the possibility of it working. My guess is 3G will call Gio in once, make his life miserable and when Gio doesn’t react the way he wants he’ll write him off as having a bad attitude. Essentially 3G doesn’t think he did anything wrong and shouldn’t have to patch things up with a player whose parents did their best to humiliate him and get him fired. USSF by rehiring 3G essentially endorsed that point of view.

  2. you are sore how you feel your coach treated you. your family got in trouble making a fuss about it trying to kneecap the coach, dig up assorted old skeletons, without success btw. you tried to stay in the background but loafed in practice, were put to a team vote, and aren’t happy about it all. a general ordeal. it was supposed to be behind scenes but hits the public. you say i am over it and eager to play. you play for another coach and find a vibe even. old coach comes back. first thing he does is bring up how you haven’t talked and how a process will be required. is this productive? you don’t feel like you’re being jabbed a little and it’s still more personal and public than you hoped?

    i mean did some of your forget before pulling the muscle he played a few spring games? counting NL as spring. some of this is my “served his time” thing. sorry boss but you already made him suffer during WC for his crimes. your replacements reintegrated him. that’s time served. this is part of why i see some of this as an “i am the boss again” flex. because in terms of USMNT continuity the general organization moved past it and he even started some in weah’s absence. now we’re back to january or december in GB’s head. no dude, we kept playing games. it’s september. catch up, son.

  3. Goalkeepers (3)
    Drake Callender – Inter Miami CF
    Ethan Horvath – Nottingham Forest
    Matt Turner – Nottingham Forest
    Defenders (9)
    Sergiño Dest – PSV Eindhoven
    Kristoffer Lund – Palermo
    Mark McKenzie – Genk
    Kevin Paredes – Wolfsburg
    Tim Ream – Fulham
    Chris Richards – Crystal Palace
    Antonee Robinson – Fulham
    Miles Robinson – Atlanta United
    Joe Scally – Borussia Mönchengladbach
    Midfielders (6)
    Johnny Cardoso – Internacional
    Benjamin Cremaschi – Inter Miami CF
    Luca de la Torre – Celta Vigo
    Weston McKennie – Juventus
    Yunus Musah – AC Milan
    Malik Tillman – PSV Eindhoven
    Forwards (6)
    Brenden Aaronson – Union Berlin
    Folarin Balogun – Arsenal
    Cade Cowell – San Jose Earthquakes
    Ricardo Pepi – PSV Eindhoven
    Christian Pulisic – AC Milan
    Tim Weah – Juventus

  4. After the disgraceful stunt him and his parents pulled in the last World Cup I wouldn’t be surprised if Berhalter never calls him again…… that and the fact that he can’t get off the bench because of injuries or lack of talent.
    Eventually he’ll need to contribute something more than clickbait articles.

  5. My prediction of what the roster will be.
    For: Pepi, Wright (Balo probably needs to go to Monaco to begin training but if not should be involved)
    Att: Pulisic, Weah, Aaronson, MTillman
    MF: Luca, Musah, Mihailovic, Tessman, Acosta, Wes (unless he’s sold this week)
    Def: Dest, Jedi, Ream, Richards, MRobinson, Jones, Scally, Neal ?
    GK: Turner, Callendar, Johnson
    Reports they talked with Cremansci, I think that’s more sending a message. He’s played ton of late unless he’s ready to commit and it doesn’t sound like he is. Everyone is pretty much hurt. Sargent, Zim, Johnny, CCV, Adams, Steffen, Booth. I could see them going almost Jan campish given opponent and time of year but I’d rather see a couple GCers mixed with actual good players instead of just GC roster. Mihailovic or Busio, maybe Reynolds or Vazquez. Ferreira if your going to play him as not a forward. Koleosho but he’s not coming at this point.

    • Luca is dealing with an injury he sustained from the weekend. I would guess a lot of the euro guys won’t be selected for these two games.

    • My prediction going a bit more MLS heavy and add some potential u23 players.

      GK: Celentano, Slonina, Turner
      D: Jones, Lennon, Reynolds, Wiley, M. Robinson, Richards, Ream, Campbell
      M: Cardoso, Tessman, McKennie A. Morris, Zendejas, Cremansci( not going to hurt his decision playing in friendlies), Mcglynn
      A: Cowell, B. Aaronson, Pulisic(leadership, captain), Pepi, Ferreira, Vasquez, Luna, Booth

      I won’t be surprised if Weah, Jedi, Musah, Balogun are all left in Europe. Paredes and P. Aaronson are fighting for more minutes. Dest just got to PSV and M. Tillman needs to stay back and train during this international window.

      Only reason for adding Ream is because we are light on healthy CB’s. Z-man is injured, Trusty hasn’t gotten any minutes, CCV injured, McKenzie. Also could see Pulisic only playing one game and returning back to Milan

      If Cremansci declines then add Noel Buck.

      • There was talk the U23s would have camps each fall window but no official word so maybe not this time.

    • if you want to be neutral, setting aside the sports question of does he play, which we can’t answer now — fair enough — we don’t yet know how they will interact and if it’s professional or tabloid.

  6. Have you talked? Nope. Do you think you’ll resolve your differences? We both have a lot of work to do, but we both have the same goal to win.
    Never Berhalters: Omg Gregg is trashing Gio in the press again.

    • These were the most scripted nothing burger answers. An interview given to Vanity Fair so that not every question Wednesday at the roster press conference and next week during camp are not about Gio. Obviously if they’d actually talked it would be better or maybe worse but it looks like USSF is directing this process not Gregg or Gio.

      • JR,

        Given his experience with the Leadership Conference, you’d think Gregg would want to keep the lowest media profile imaginable, at least for the start of his “Vision 2.0 World Tour”.

        I thought that was why they didn’t let him manage the Gold Cup. The media would have been an insane distraction.

        But it is possible that, while the Leadership thing was a self-inflicted hubris wound, this VF interview was mandatory.

        Being a professional means you are paid to get along with people you think are slimy scumbags.

        If they want USMNT and World Cup glory, Gregg and Gio both need each other. The best outcome for both is for both of them to succeed at supporting each other.

        In Gio’s case the best revenge is living well. The more outstanding he is, the more he puts this team on his back and takes it to good places, the more he rubs it in Gregg’s face.

        In Gregg’s case the better Gio makes this team, the more secure Gregg will be. And he will receive lots of props for evolving and being flexible and mature.

        They don’t need to talk. That’s what BJ is there for.

        All Gregg has to do is just is play Gio ahead of Ferreira, Zendejas, Djorde, Roldan, Ariolla, Lletget, Brenden or any of the other pretenders. Let Gio and the others work out the dirty details.

        Sports history is full of successful teams that were lead by managers who were very unloved by their players

      • V: VF is a general audience mag, i severely doubt it was seen as mandatory press. if we had a brain we’d be low-keying the coach until he hit the press conferences themselves, which would be primarily soccer people and fewer possible questions within an allotment of time. i have no idea why we would consider it wise to rush the old HC trying to heal the open sore right back out there for a long form interview with less pliable general press. you want this resolved not reopened.

        isn’t it just as possible the man scheduled the interview himself to remind us who is once again boss? because, setting aside my “hot air” concerns — that talking about ethics is ok but we really have to see how you act — the one vibe i got from all this was that him talking as he did conveys he is back in charge and dictating terms.

      • IV,

        “V: VF is a general audience mag, i severely doubt it was seen as mandatory press.”

        You are correct but the soccer powers in America need to broaden the appeal of the game so that “general audience mags” like V Fair care about our little soap operas. If it’s me, I lock Gregg in a basement somewhere until game time, without any devices. But I can see where the USSF would want the debonair and suave Greggy charming the average sports fans with his all too human character.

        If Gregg went rogue with this then I’m mad at Gooch for letting Gregg run wild. Gooch’s job is see that Gregg has everything he needs to succeed. Maybe that means protecting Gregg from himself.

        “isn’t it just as possible the man scheduled the interview himself to remind us who is once again boss? because, setting aside my “hot air” concerns — that talking about ethics is ok but we really have to see how you act — the one vibe i got from all this was that him talking as he did conveys he is back in charge and dictating terms.”

        I think we will see if Gregg is really back or if he’s on that leash that I think they have him under.

        If I’m being conspiratorial then letting Gregg have free reign is another way of giving him more rope to hang himself. For me Copa America is the test. Get through that with the team looking like it is headed in the right direction and Gregg gets to stay.

        If not there is sufficient time to make a change before 2026.

      • V: we just rehired the guy are we really engaging in “here’s some rope” management tactics before game 1? if i’m re-investing in the guy i want to protect him. soccer press for a few minutes before these upcoming games, then we play some games. i do want him to say the right things but if he briefly talks 10 mins and has been instructed with some scripted response to reyna inquiries that’s a low low bar and he’d almost have to want to be fired.

        vs. VF interview that’s probably a lengthy sit-down and harder to control. it also makes little sense as marketing because these upcoming friendlies are so lackluster. if i want to build GB back up it’s let him win a few and then have him sit down next summer for copa america. it doesn’t make a ton of sense to be like here, come see our new coach against uzbekistan in a friendly, let’s take relational risks to promote the coach ahead of that game.

        to me what this needs is success and stability and on the second half, to me it’s hide the coach for a while. since we’re not switching now.

      • IV,

        “V: we just rehired the guy are we really engaging in “here’s some rope” management tactics before game 1? ”

        Don’t look at me, I didn’t greenlight this interview.

        “if i’m re-investing in the guy i want to protect him. soccer press for a few minutes before these upcoming games, then we play some games…….. ”

        Based on this interview, which need not have been given, they are doing a shit job in protecting this guy from himself.

        ” i do want him to say the right things but if he briefly talks 10 mins and has been instructed with some scripted response to reyna inquiries that’s a low low bar and he’d almost have to want to be fired.”

        Talk to his handlers who ,based on this interview, aren’t really paying attention.

        Gregg’s approach to this VF interview is on him not any of us.

        Neither you nor I know what the USSF and Gregg have discussed in terms of how he is to behave going forward.
        He might consider keeping the lowest possible profile and keep it all about the players. There are a lot more effective ways to say nothing of substance. It was a useless interview that need not have been given. If we assume that the USSF greenlighted this then someone needs to get fired.

        “to me what this needs is success and stability and on the second half, to me it’s hide the coach for a while. since we’re not switching now.”

        Don’t be so sure. Copa America is a very tough competition and if Gregg and the boys are not completely on top of it we could easily, very easily, be totally humiliated. And at that point the time line would be such that it would be easier to attract some decent talent, someone better than Jason Kreis, for example.

    • the first rule of lockerroom fight club is shut up about fight club. the player didn’t like being benched but they went nuts about airing the lockerroom laundry in public. so how does he start the new era? sits down with VF and more of the same.

      i am open to the GM took him aside and said some things are gonna change but this makes me skeptical and if he hasn’t changed we are wasting our time.

      • Didn’t say anything about Gio other than he hadn’t talked, spoke in broad generalities, this is nothing close to December.

      • JR, as i said below, if you remember the december stuff, it was originally presented as indirect anonymized hypotheticals to a leadership audience. and while waving it off as generalities this is the only player we got a process outlined for how his involvement will go. to me this is still a coach chatting about behind scenes processes the fans don’t need a running commentary on. you keep acting like it’s ok but if this is truly being dealt with in the lockerroom, what one says is that’s between he and i. discussing the process or dipping one’s toe in the substance is airing out the lockerroom still.

        back in college if a player get a two-yellow red at a time when it wasn’t an automatic suspension, it was put to a team vote. all the college paper knew was whether he played game 2. we didn’t say there was a vote. we didn’t say who it was about. we didn’t discuss how such a process might go. we didn’t spread what was said in favor or against. all the public and press got was he was back out there next day. this is how “what happens in the lockerroom stays there” should work.

        you’re not seeing how constant chatter like this makes him a special case. you’re not seeing how it is spilling aspects of the relationship even if they are vague and procedural. you’re missing “this is between he and i” is a sufficient answer. or “no comment.”

        i have encouraged shutting up and being professional because to me this needs to be sewed up and over. i do not needing a running report about team internal discipline and giving one is half the problem. and the press might dig up stories but the idea isn’t to be handing them out with bows tied on them every window. the real, silencing platitude is “that’s an internal matter i don’t discuss with you.” over, done.

    • let me come at this different. when did a general audience mag like VF start interviewing mediocre MNT coaches? (as opposed to sports outlets like TBS, Fox, ESPN ,or SBI). we know they were fishing for more reyna and berhalter. because we know they wouldn’t care that much about the uzbek friendly or even the new US cycle. they might care in 3 years.

      it’s a nothing burger response to a general audience. we didn’t hire him to talk soccer to the masses or do motivational speaking though. we hired him to coach. in that context he can’t shut up about behind the scenes. how he handles the players has more to do with how this ends up.

      • kind of like that motivational speaker chat was supposed to be an anonymized tale of leadership to a general corporate audience but to a sports fan or specifically soccer fan it was airing laundry about a specific player and kind of bragging.

    • Mistake # 1 – Gregg’s. Before the WC starts GGG tells players they’re not going to be utilized much. This is just dumb. He’s no idea who may get injured or suspended in the group phase; or what tactical changes he may need to implement. But tells players don’t expect to play. IDIOT
      Mistake # 2 – Gio’s Acted like a kid instead of a professional. Got disgruntled and let it be known by not putting forth any effort in practices. Made amends to the team….and was forgiven.
      Mistake # 3 – Gregg’s . Talks about things said and done inside the locker room to a bunch of people outside the team and federation. This just isn’t done while you’re still under contract and actually hoping for an extension. If you don’t get the extension and want to burn bridges…fine talk about it. And anyone who believes for a moment a BS claim of “off the record” is insane. IDIOT
      Mistake # 4 – Claudio & Wife. Just petty and proves that there is too much interaction/involvement/access for past players in USSF decisions and brass.
      Mistake # 5 – USSF’s. Rehiring Gregg was the biggest mistake and underlines the fact those running USSF have no clue. Could have put all this behind themselves and moved on….but No we get to revisit this every camp. Speculating if Gio & Gregg have mended fences. If Gregg isn’t calling/playing Gio in retaliation. It’s never going to end….it will just keep being a distraction.
      IMO Gregg is responsible for 2 serious laps of judgement. USSF is responsible for 2 serious mistakes. And Gio responsible for 1, but already performed contrition. That puts the burden on USSF and Gregg to try and mend the relationship if they can. If they can’t than it’s likely going to be to detriment of the Team & Gio….as Gio will be exiled until Gregg is replaced.

      • If you’ve ever taken a coaching course or done any coaching beyond little kids, Gregg probably made the right move telling Gio his plans. It’s what they teach you to do. Not being honest the older the player gets or being vague just isn’t realistic. Gio’s on the pitch he’s in the strategy/video sessions he sees the writing on the wall. We don’t know what was said was not starting, not playing much, only this opponent not that one. Look at some of the players that have openly criticized Vlatko it’s about told us one thing did something different.
        If they haven’t talked in three months, and Gregg needed meditation therapy to deal with the stress of handling it, this doesn’t seem likely to work.

      • JR: i get you’re pushing honesty and transparency and i can respect that. but the helpful honesty here is “you won’t be starting the opener, but i need you ready because you will play this tournament.” that gets you effort in spite of what is happening. “sorry but you may not play much,” no, do not tell me that is wise to say or what the coaching manuals suggest. you do not know for certain if there will be a contingncy. and you are bumming out the athlete before they play. my experience confidence is a chunk of athlete effort and execution. you do not undermine that confidence just to make yourself feel 5% more honest. you aren’t starting today — here’s why — is pretty honest already.

        you’re missing that vlatko is literally giving a false impression — wrong lineup, wrong formation, wrong tactics — where reyna is really about honesty and the precise spoonful of sugar to be used so they player stays checked-in, works in practice, is ready when we need a goal or two on holland. i think you’re thinking about yourself as coach. abstract ethics. the question here is game management. keeping players happy and engaged and ready. tactics is the 10000 feet version of coaching. but part of it is handling personalities and i disagree what you’re saying. that sounds aloof and like an excuse for most of your bench to check out. you want every single one of your players eager and dialed because you never know when wondo has to play and gets that sitter. and if you have invested all your time in the starters, and been brusque with the bench about their chances, buy the ticket, take the ride.

      • IV: the gray area is no one has ever said what Gregg told Gio about his playing time. Gregg haters assume it was something like “Gio you aren’t going to play much for us” Gio haters without much evidence say Gregg said “you won’t start”. What was actually said isn’t known publicly.

      • JR: lemme put it this way. the player did not respond well. to be fair, maybe did not respond well to the nicest version. i do not know the specifics. but i’m inclined to believe the personality management failed as the player then went into loaf mode.

        kind of like while i support what sampson did in 1998, based on player reaction, i wonder if he went about it correctly. should it have been a team vote with full disclosure, like reyna? that channels the anger at the cut player. were they told he’d committed an unforgiveable infraction against team rules and been cut by the coach (details left out, but a hint)? cause what i get out of it he just gets cut and the details got sat on for more than a decade, which is fair enough, but came at an expense in terms of the team.

        i still think none of this should exit the lockerroom. you get your house sorted behind closed doors and the players still on the team emerge and get ready for the next one.

        i will note weston got sent home from a game 2021 and we the public have heard what went on about that one too. this isn’t the only time this leakage has happened.

  7. This is absolutely INSANE … you can’t set the situation right if you don’t ACT!

    I did something offensive.
    My offensive action caused harm to someone else.
    I made no contact with the offended party.
    I continue to talk about the offense and the person BUT NOT with the person.

    You do t have to have a Masters Degree in conflict resolution to see this is gonna go badly OF THINGS DON’T CHANGE.

    Great googly moogly 🤷🏽‍♂️

  8. for all this chatter what i’d read was they haven’t actually talked. which i am fine with. but that means this is all abstract hot air. what matters is when they climb back in the foxhole together for real. i’ve said i’d be fine if they generally ignored each other, didn’t pretend to fix it, but he plays him when he should and reyna doesn’t act out. but whatever. we won’t know til they have to be boss and employee again.

    beyond that, does he not learn his lessons? why are we discussing our clubhouse to the media, again?

    • Love how you commented on the article like you had the inside tea that they hadn’t talked, when it was literally in the article that they hadn’t talked. Paragraph 3 Sentence 1.

      • 1 first word of this to me was a social media post saying they hadn’t talked. that is the telling detail, and what i expected would drive the discussion. 2 i’d swear the headline wasn’t what it is now but i can’t be absolutely sure. 3 i didn’t see the detail in the article. maybe i missed that. i am less sure on that. 4 the point wasn’t to give larry guff. the point is at best he is now abstractly discussing how to later concretely handle the player — which is hot air; the point is at worst he’s literally repeating his dumb mistakes.

        you complain to a coach about playing time. the coach says we’ll see what happens, keep working hard. you try to play your best for a week. if you’ve played you know the coach’s platitudes mean jack when you show up on game day. you either see the field or not. that is actually generous — “we’ll see what happens” — as in this situation he’s already happening — arguably stepped in the big bear trap again already by publicly discussing fight club.

    • If you think Gio didn’t screw himself by acting like a spoiled child when he was told he’d have a limited role going into the WC bc he was coming off of an injury, and let’s no forget Gio missed almost the entirety of wcq bc of injuries, and is still injured, then you’re as gullible as a puppy. Did you ever think Greg was trying to protect an asset from further injury because players can’t protect themselves? He could have easily left Gio at home, but we know how the fanbase would’ve acted if that happened, so Greg was in a lose-lose situation. Greg did something stupid after the fact by ignorantly assuming his remarks about what happened would remain anonymous, but I stand behind how he handled the situation in Qatar, Gio needs to grow the fuck up, quick!

      • So you’re telling me playing Jordan Morris, Haji Wright and Jesus Ferreira over Gio was a better move?

        Berhalter lost the locker room before the tourney and he’s working on doing it again before his first match.

        He needs to ignore the media and manage his team. He should have flown to Europe and spent some time with Gio a month ago and not told some reporter that he isnt doing his job again.

      • Ronnie,

        “Gio needs to grow the fuck up, quick!”

        Where have you been?

        You missed the part about Gio being called out by his team mates, Gio apologizing and then being forgiven by his team mates AT THE WORLD CUP before the tourney ended.

        As far as those guys are concerned it was a non issue at that point. You can find lots of interviews to back that up.

        Gregg’s treatment of Gio at that time was fine.

        The issue is Gregg opening his big mouth after the fact and starting this entire Reyna- business. Gregg has no one but his own big mouth to blame for everything that followed.

      • Your always on here insulting people Ronniet. Very weird your arguing an opinion and not a fact. Both were wrong.

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