Stejskal: In the USMNT’s Berhalter/Reyna saga, everyone involved faces an uncertain future

This ought to be a preemptive and thrilling second for the USA males’s nationwide group. A bunch of younger gamers carried out admirably on the World Cup in Qatar and will take a step ahead by 2026, when the USA will co-host the event with Canada and Mexico.

However as an alternative of wanting forward with anticipation, we’re caught up in a Shakespearean drama, the long run unsure.

For individuals who want a fast recap: on the World Cup in Qatar, the gifted striker Gio Reina He confirmed an alarming lack of effort in coaching, which annoyed his teammates and coaches and contributed to lower than anticipated enjoying time within the event. Rayna finally apologized to the group and by all accounts, the group moved on.

Just a few days after the US was eradicated, coach Greg Berhalter detailed the story at a management convention in New York Metropolis. Berhalter’s feedback have been alleged to be off the file and Reina’s identify was by no means talked about, however they have been however printed in a publication after the occasion. And to anybody paying consideration, it was clear to whom he was referring.

Gio’s dad and mom, Claudio and Daniel Reyna, have been upset that their son’s unprofessional conduct was being broadcast publicly, and referred to as on NFL supervisor Ernie Stewart to vent their anger. Danielle tells him a couple of 1991 home violence incident through which Greg Berhalter kicked his present spouse, Rosalind, once they have been courting whereas on the College of North Carolina.

“I advised Ernie I believed it was significantly unfair that Gio … was nonetheless being dragged via the mud when Greg sought and obtained forgiveness for doing one thing a lot worse on the similar age,” she mentioned in a press release.

Stewart then took these allegations to his NFL bosses, who employed an out of doors legislation agency to analyze additional. Quickly the entire matter grew to become public information.

The peak of all of it was how intertwined all these limbs have been. Greg Berhalter and Claudio Reyna grew to become associates enjoying below Claudio’s father on the youth group in Northern New Jersey. They went to highschool collectively and have been teammates for the USA on the World Cup twice. Rosalind Berhalter and Danielle Reyna have been good associates, roommates, and teammates on the UNC soccer group. They stored their households shut for the subsequent 30 years. Stewart additionally has an extended historical past with each households, having performed with Claudio Reina in three World Cups and with Greg Berhalter in a single.

Other than Rosalind Berhalter and Stewart, all members behaved disgracefully.

The dearth of effort was completely inappropriate from 20-year-old Gio Reina, whose means to start out the opener in opposition to Wales didn’t respect his team-mates, coaches and gamers who narrowly missed out on the ultimate record.

Speaking In regards to the State of affairs in a Room Filled with Strangers was Foolishness by Greg Berhalter. Whatever the occasion’s floor guidelines, the USA’s head coach must know that revealing particulars contained in the locker room in any unfamiliar location might trigger a leak.

It ought to go with out saying that Greg Berhalter’s abuse of Rosalind was reprehensible. She is going to all the time need to take the shock of the second; He should dwell with this disgrace for the remainder of his life. Data of him ought to play a job in whether or not American soccer will hold Berhalter, who was 18 when he offended Rosalind, as head coach. The continuing investigation should additionally look into what the union knew in regards to the incident when Berhalter was first employed in December 2018. On the time, Berhalter’s brother Jay was a high-ranking USSF govt, although Stewart was most instantly chargeable for the hiring.

Elder Renas must also be ashamed. Claudio Reyna admitted in a press release earlier this month that he had been texting Stewart and GM Brian McBride, his former USA teammate, about his frustration at not having enjoying time in Qatar. This could be inappropriate conduct for a father or mother of an under-12 participant. For a former USMNT captain and present MLS athletic director whose son was then in a World Cup, it was extremely inappropriate.

Most of these actions seem like a part of a sample in response to Reyna, who was first reported From Fox Sports activities Final Thursday and later confirmed by sources the athletebeforehand tried to affect United States U-17 nationwide group coach Rafael Weki relating to his remedy of Gio on the 2019 U-17 World Cup.

In fact, none of that is as dangerous as Daniel Rina detailing the incident through which Berhalter kicked Rosalind to Stewart. The difficulty is just not with revelations of abuse, however how Danielle Reyna revealed it: with out Rosalind’s consent.

In her assertion, Danielle didn’t say she reported the abuse to Stewart out of concern for Rosalind, her good friend of greater than 30 years. She did not say she advised Stewart as a result of she felt Greg was morally incapable of teaching the USMNT. By her personal admission, she naively didn’t understand that what she mentioned might immediate an investigation.

It did not appear to matter to her that it wasn’t her story she needed to share. By no means thoughts that she was as soon as a detailed good friend of Rosalind’s. It did not even matter that the Burhalters had come to phrases with the incident, they reconciled and appeared to have had an extended, completely happy and fruitful marriage. The one factor that appeared to matter to Danielle was that Greg made some feedback about her son’s dangerous conduct on the World Cup. That was sufficient for her to tug one other household via the mud. What I did was spiteful, vindictive, and utterly disproportionate.

She reads components of Danielle’s assertion as if she feels her relations are the victims. That is humorous. The one victims listed below are Rosalind Berhalter and her youngsters, who needed to dwell this uncomfortable expertise below some extremely vibrant lights.

For others, the interval forward may very well be decisive, as US Soccer’s unbiased investigation stays open.

Berhalter desires to remain on as U.S. head coach, and Stewart advised reporters he was nonetheless being thought of, however there have been legit questions even earlier than this drama grew to become public about whether or not he ought to be retained. The 2022 World Cup was a strong success however not a smashing success on the sphere with a couple of missteps alongside the best way.

Gamers who’ve been requested in regards to the scandal over the previous two weeks have usually been supportive of Berhalter, however it’s potential, reminiscent of American legend Darcus Beasley. Featured on HBO Max’s Aftergame After the USA beat New Zealand 4-0 on Tuesday, his feedback within the management seminar damage his standing within the locker room. NFL might resolve bringing Berhalter again shall be too problematic, particularly if the affiliation goals to focus completely on constructing optimistic momentum forward of 2026.

Nevertheless, life like options to taking on Berhalter’s job could also be scarce. For instance, coaching for the USMNT may very well be very boring till 2026. As one of many host nations, there isn’t any qualification for the USA and there’s no assure that People will get into the 2024 Copa América. The one significant matches for the American males may very well be between now and Subsequent World Cup begin in opposition to regional rivals in CONCACAF Nations League and Gold Cup. For giant-name, world-class managers, these tournaments most likely will not be all that enticing. And for all we all know, US Soccer, which has paid and continues to pay an unlimited quantity of authorized charges thanks to numerous lawsuits and investigations, might not even have the ability to afford the sorts of salaries commanded by the highest managers available in the market.

Claudio Reina’s future is also affected. In accordance with a press release from the union on January 3, throughout the course of the investigation, the USSF “realized of potential inappropriate conduct towards a number of members of our workers by people exterior our group. We take such conduct critically and have expanded our investigation to incorporate these allegations.” Given his assertion about texting Stewart and McBride and the report on his texting about Wicky on the U-17 World Cup, this prolonged scope might implicate Reyna, and will result in repercussions by Austin FC, her employer.

“At no time have I threatened anybody, nor will I ever,” Reyna mentioned in his assertion. But when the investigation confirms situations of inappropriate conduct by Renna, Austin ought to critically take into account whether or not they need to proceed using him as athletic director.

Becoming with the remainder of this story, there’s additionally some private awkwardness at play in Austin, which is coached by former US worldwide Josh Wolf. The 2-time World Cup veteran got here to the membership after spending six years as Berhalter’s senior lieutenant, first with Columbus, then with the USMNT. As well as, Austin is owned by Anthony Precourt, who employed Berhalter in Columbus in November 2013. It is a pair of people with deep connections to Berhalter on either side of the rayon on the Austin organizational chart.

Austin has already put a long way between himself and Reyna — no less than briefly. Since 5 January, the day after it was reported that Renas’ group had been concerned within the scandal, the membership haven’t cited Claudio in any of their first-team list-related press releases, as an alternative together with a coloration from Wolfe or their director of participant personnel Sean. Rubio. Beneath regular circumstances, Rina is quoted in ads associated to the record. A membership spokesperson declined to touch upon the explanation for the change when it was reached on Tuesday.

There are inquiries to be answered for Gio Reyna, too. He is nonetheless younger and might actually develop from his dangerous conduct in Qatar, however not placing within the correct effort at a World Cup is an important pink flag it doesn’t matter what age. Reyna is gifted, however the feeling that he deserved to start out for a US group the place he did not play a major position throughout the playoffs resulting from accidents signifies a level of entitlement out of proportion to what he is already finished on the sphere. He additionally ignores the power of fellow wingers Christian Pulisic and Tim Weah, who each began and carried out nicely in opposition to Reina in Qatar.

The primary time he returns to the locker room in the USA can also be a bit of uncomfortable. It could not find yourself being a difficulty, but it surely’s not laborious to think about a few of his teammates wanting sideways at him after his mother and pa escalated this drama.

If Reyna responds to this case with humility, by placing his head up and utilizing his appreciable abilities to earn his place within the group, then he shall be high-quality for membership and nation. If he does not, it might negatively have an effect on his profession.

Greater than something, it is a ridiculous and unhappy method for the American guys to finish a comparatively profitable World Cup run and usher in what ought to be an thrilling second for your complete American soccer group. We do not know what is going to come of this insanity, however we do know that what ought to have been a optimistic second has already been indelibly tainted.


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Rena’s mom reported an incident involving Berhalter and his spouse to US Soccer

(Picture: Ercin Erturk/Anadolu Company through Getty Pictures)

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