Reyna hits back over US World Cup bust-up

Gio Reyna
(Photo: Twitter)
NEW YORK, United StatesGio Reyna has hit back at US coach Gregg Berhalter over comments regarding the Borussia Dortmund forward's behavior during the World Cup.اضافة اعلان

Reyna, widely regarded as one of the most talented young players in US soccer, was hardly used by Berhalter in Qatar, where the Americans reached the last 16.

The 20-year-old's limited involvement was the source of intense speculation, with Berhalter suggesting Reyna was not fully fit — a claim contradicted by the player.

Recent US media reports have lifted the lid on tensions between Reyna and Berhalter, revealing that the player was almost sent home because of his attitude during training sessions.

Reyna was allowed to stay in the squad after being forced to apologize in front of his team-mates, the reports said.

Without naming Reyna directly, Berhalter appeared to confirm the reports at a recent conference on "moral leadership" in New York.

Berhalter told the conference the US team staff had "a player that was clearly not meeting expectations on and off the field".

He added: "We were ready to book a plane ticket home, that's how extreme it was."

In a statement posted on Instagram, Reyna acknowledged that he had reacted badly after being informed by Berhalter shortly before the World Cup that he would have a "very limited" role at the tournament.

"I fully acknowledge that I let my emotions get the best of me and affect my training and behavior for a few days," Reyna said.

"I am disappointed that there is continuing coverage of this matter ... and extremely surprised that anyone on the US men's team staff would contribute to it."

Reyna said Berhalter had always stated that issues within the team would remain "in-house".

"I hoped not to comment on matters at the World Cup. It is my belief that things that happen in a team setting ought to remain private."

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