Reyna expects minutes to be managed as Dortmund star returns to USMNT after long-term injury
Gio Reyna says he understands his minutes may need to be restricte as he rejoins the U.S. men’s national team for the first time since September.
Reyna missed months with a hamstring injury suffered during the initial round of World Cup qualifiers, only to pick up another knock on returning in February.
He has since returned and featured for 90 minutes in Borussia Dortmund’s 1-1 draw with Cologne over the weekend but, heading into a week with three games in quick succession, Reyna admits he is likely to have his minutes managed by USMNT boss Gregg Berhalter.
What did Reyna say?
“I just want to help the group,” Reyna said. “I know I can help the group, just with my playing and just being here. Obviously, I’ve been in the group in the past many times.
“We have really important games and our main goal is to go the World Cup and that’s what I’m here to help us do.
“I guess over the three games, obviously, I’m coming off a long injury, we’re going to see. I’m definitely going to be managed in some sort of way, but we’ll see. We’re figuring it out now.
“The main goal is obviously to qualify and then obviously to leave the camp healthy. So yeah, we’re going to be smart with it.”
Asked about his fitness, Reyna said he feels sound but still needs more time to feel totally back to where he once was.
“It’s going to take some time,” he said. “I was off for a long time so I understand that. I’ve got to take it one day at a time and just try to try to improve.”
Reyna has missed all but one camp for the USMNT since the start of qualifying, with injury in the initial round costing him months of games.
As a result, he has been forced to watch on as the U.S. has navigated World Cup qualifying towards this final round.
The U.S. sit second in the table, knowing that results against Mexico and Panama would ensure them of a World Cup spot, and Reyna is glad to be back and glad to have a chance to contribute to that goal after missing so much time.
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“It was really hard,” he admitted. “It was really hard being out, just not playing for that amount of time in general. Not necessarily the national team but just in general, not playing.
“Of course, these are important qualifier games. It was tough staying up late until 3 or 4am watching the games in Germany. It definitely motivated me to try to be back as soon as possible.”