Given the drama involving the Berhalters and the Reynas, to say that the status of the American men’s national team is complicated or unpleasant would be an understatement.
The parents of 19-year-old USMNT and Borussia Dortmund winger Gio Reyna,
Danielle and Claudio Reyna informed Earnie Stewart of a 1991 domestic violence incident involving Gregg Berhalter and his then-wife Rosalind Berhalter. The information was made public at the same time when Gio Reyna’s role as a substitute for the USMNT under Gregg Berhalter at the Qatar 2022 World Cup was decreased.
Since Danielle Reyna and Rosalind Berhalter were teammates and close friends while playing for the University of North Carolina, the two families have a long history of friendship. Before enrolling at UNC, Gregg Berhalter and Claudio Reyna played basketball together in high school.
On Tuesday, Berhalter said that he made the information of his violent encounter with Rosalind in 1991 public because someone was attempting to “take me down.” The recent investigation by U.S. Soccer into “possible inappropriate behavior toward various members of our staff by individuals outside of our organization” seems to have destroyed that link.
Danielle Reyna said in a statement to The Athletic, “I thought it was especially unfair that Gio, who had apologized for acting immaturely about his playing time, was still being dragged through the mud. Gregg Berhalter had asked for and received forgiveness for doing something so much worse at the same age. “Without getting into specifics, yesterday’s statements greatly downplayed the abuse on the disputed night. I helped Rosalind Berhalter through the subsequent trauma because she was my roommate, teammate, and best friend. After that, it took me a very long time to forgive and accept Gregg, but I worked very hard to show him grace, and in the end, I made both of them and their children a very important part of my family’s life. I would have wanted and anticipated him to treat Gio with the same elegance. This explains why the current situation is so painful and difficult.
Jimmy Conrad and Heath Pearce, hosts of In Soccer We Trust, both ex-USMNT players who seldom ever worked with Reyna and Berhalter, gave an insightful look into the dynamics in the background without holding back.
Regarding Danielle Reyna, Pearce remarked, “It’s not her place.” “She has no business disclosing that information,” Gregg Berhalter and his wife claimed that they developed from it, learned from it, and built on the fact that she refused to associate with him. It is not her place to bring that up, but I don’t excuse the choices or errors that he made. Where was she two years ago, assuming it was, then?
When Berhalter was competing [for the national team], where was she? She ought to have voiced her opinion at that time if she believed he deserved nothing. However, she is now acting in this manner as an upset mother who feels that her son should have been handled with more grace in a certain circumstance.
It makes sense that they would do whatever it took to safeguard their child in their role as parents, yet it seems opportunistic. Pearce concurs that Berhalter should not have brought up Reyna’s lack of dedication to the team during a leadership session days after the US was eliminated from the World Cup. Just that complicated matters. The events that followed turned the situation from chaotic to ugly.
I remember thinking, “Well, Claudio didn’t even play in his first World Cup,” when we learned about this incident in Qatar. He was listed in 1994. He had to watch because he was the young man “said Conrad. “We may argue that Gio is likely ready and deserves some time at this point. However, Gregg may have felt at that time that he simply wasn’t the proper piece of the puzzle.
Claudio and his wife “should have been able to foster that and say, ‘hey, listen, this is just part of it.’ If anyone knows how to cope with hardship at the greatest level, they are Claudio and his wife. This is a step along the way.
He has the best dad there to handle this issue, and his mom has also been there. She had the opportunity to play and was around for Claudio’s highs and lows. It almost seemed as though they were encouraging him to become angrier. similar to “no, you deserve to be out there.” It’s like the ideal parents for youth soccer.
This is a circumstance that could have consequences in the future and is also bringing back a sad episode in Rosalind’s past against her will. There is undoubtedly a simpler way to do it, even though U.S. Soccer aims to enhance its hiring procedure going forward as a result of this inquiry. Conrad also notes that everyone may be affected going forward as a result of this.
“We have, in my opinion, passed the point of no return, Conrad stated. “I believe that this action by Danielle Reyna will harm this industry in some way, despite the fact that it might end the careers of certain people here, including that of her husband Claudio. It wasn’t their place to say anything. I’m not sure what Austin FC will do, and I’m not sure if U.S. Soccer will want to work with Claudio.
Relationships are crucial to Claudio’s role as sports director of Austin FC, and this would call into question how well he manages them. Conrad bemoaned the situation of the national team, noting that Berhalter was no longer under contract but was still being considered for an extension pending the outcome of the probe.
“I believe it will have the desired impact, which is terrible because if Gregg Berhalter is allowed to continue, this will only continue to be a problem. I’m not sure whether you can add Gio if Gregg stays the coach.”