Anthony Hudson: 'Gio Reyna is a good guy and a top talent'

Two days after U.S. Soccer released the Alston & Bird Report that detailed the behavior of his parents, Gio Reyna was named by U.S. interim head coach Anthony Hudson  to the 24-player roster for the USA’s Concacaf Nations League games at Grenada on March 24 and vs. El Salvador in Orlando March 27.

“We had the issue at the World Cup that we dealt with internally, that we dealt with as a group,” said Hudson, who served as an assistant coach to Gregg Berhalter in Qatar. “There was a positive response from Gio after that … and we all moved forward.

“The World Cup ended, and beyond that it became a very, very, complex situation that we see as separate from Gio, even though he’s impacted by it. ... But as far as we’re concerned, Gio is a part of our program. He’s a good guy and a top talent and he is evaluated like any other player. We made the roster decisions based on what gives the team the best opportunity to win these games, and we brought him in because we think he can help us do that.

After returning to Borussia Dortmund from Qatar, Reyna scored three Bundesliga goals off the bench, including two gamewinners. In last week’s 2-0 UEFA Champions League loss to Chelsea, Reyna came on in the fourth minute for injured Julian Brandt and the 20-year-old American was BVB’s most dangerous attacker.

Reyna is among 13 players from the 2022 World Cup squad to be called in for the first time since Qatar.

The USA has had one previous camp in 2023, for friendlies against Serbia (1-2) and Colombia (0-0). None of the five 2022 World Cup team members who attended January camp — MLS-based Sean Johnson, Walker Zimmerman, Aaron Long, Kellyn Acosta or Jesus Ferreira — were called in for the March games.

Atlanta United defender Miles Robinson is the lone MLS player called in.

It's likely that the USA’s squad for its April 19 friendly against Mexico friendly in Arizona, which does not fall inside a FIFA International Match Calendar window, will be heavy on MLS players. Then comes the Nations League final four in early June, assuming the USA qualifies, and the Gold Cup kicks off June 24.

"So that’s a lot of matches with players at different stages of their seasons," Hudson said. "Players based outside the United States will need to have a break at some point this summer, and the domestic-based players could wind up missing a number of league games if they played in all the competitions."

Mexican-American Alejandro Zendejas, who earlier this week confirmed his commitment to the USA, and Alan Soñora, who moved from Argentina's Independient to Mexico's Juarez in February, are the only players from the January camp in the March roster.

U.S. men's national team roster
Player (Club) caps/goals (age)

Ethan Horvath (Luton Town/ENG) 8/0 (27)
Zack Steffen (Middlesbrough/ENG; 29/0 (27)
*Matt Turner (Arsenal/ENG; 24/0 (28)

*Sergiño Dest (AC Milan/ITA) 23/2 (22)
Mark McKenzie (Genk/BEL) 10/0 (24)
*Tim Ream (Fulham/ENG) 50/1 (35)
Bryan Reynolds (Westerlo/BEL) 2/0 (21)
*Antonee Robinson (Fulham) 33/2 (25)
Miles Robinson (Atlanta United) 20/3 (26)
*Joe Scally (Borussia Mönchengladbach/GER) 3/0 (20)
Auston Trusty (Birmingham City/ENG) 0/0 (24)

*Brenden Aaronson (Leeds United/ENG) 28/6 (22)
Johnny Cardoso (Internacional/BRA) 4/0 (21)
*Luca de la Torre (Celta Vigo/ESP) 12/0 (24)
*Weston McKennie (Leeds United/ENG) 41/9 (24)
*Yunus Musah (Valencia/ESP) 23/0 (20)
Alan Soñora (Juárez/MEX) 2/0 (24)

Taylor Booth (Utrecht/NED) 0/0 (21)
Daryl Dike (West Bromwich Albion/ENG) 8/3 (22)
Ricardo Pepi (Groningen/NED) 12/3 (20)
*Christian Pulisic (Chelsea/ENG) 56/22 (24)
*Gio Reyna (Borussia Dortmund/GER) 16/4 (20)
*Tim Weah (Lille/FRA) 29/4 (23)
Alex Zendejas (Club América/MEX) 1/0 (25)
* Members of 2022 World Cup team.

Robinson would likely have gone to Qatar had the central defender not suffered an Achilles injury in May 2022. He returned to action with Atlanta United in its season opener on Feb. 26 and has gone the distance in all three MLS games this season. The 26-year-old's last appearance for the USA came at Costa Rica on March 30, 2022, the day the USA qualified for Qatar.

Also back after long absences:

Defender Bryan Reynolds last played for the USA in a December 2021 friendly against Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Striker Daryl Dike, injured throughout 2022, last appeared for the USA in 2021 Gold Cup semifinal.

Dike has scored seven goals for English Championship club West Brom in 19 appearances (12 starts) since November. Another center forward, Ricardo Pepi, who shone at the start of 2022 World Cup qualifying in the fall of 2021 but fell out of favor after an ill-fated move to Bundesliga club Augsburg, has scored nine goals and three assists in 20 matches for second-to-last Dutch Eredivisie club FC Groningen, including two goals in its last four games.

The roster includes two uncapped players: Utrecht winger Taylor Booth and Birmingham City center back Auston Trusty.

2022 World Cup started Tyler Adams is out with a hamstring injury.

Photo: Brad Smith/ISI Photos

31 comments about "Anthony Hudson: 'Gio Reyna is a good guy and a top talent'".
  1. John Lyncheski, March 15, 2023 at 7:47 p.m.

    Wow! Think about the players left off of the roster. Where's Tyler Adams, arguably our best midfielder? What about Josh Sargent who shone brightly at the World Cup. That's just the tip of the iceberg. Some of these decisions just don't make sense. 

  2. Santiago 1314 replied, March 15, 2023 at 9:29 p.m.

    Sargent just came back from injury... did play 45 minutes in last game

  3. Santiago 1314 replied, March 15, 2023 at 10:14 p.m.

    Clearly Something needs to be "Explained" about: NO... CCV-EPB-Richards

  4. Santiago 1314, March 15, 2023 at 9:46 p.m.

    Why only 24.???

    Tillman coming back from "Injury"
    What about Chris Richards.??? (Anybody hear Anything.???)


    only 2 CtFws.???  Maybe we will Finally see Reyna as a #10, with CP and Weah as FWs!?!?!?


  5. Goal Goal, March 15, 2023 at 9:53 p.m.

    What is this lingering attention to Reyna?  If he is a top talent play him.  The only way to tell is if he produces.  If he produces he will go on.  If he doesn't step on his you know what while pouting he will be okay.  My question is if Reyna wasn't attached to him would he be considered a top talent?

  6. Santiago 1314 replied, March 15, 2023 at 10:11 p.m.

    I really don't care if he is a "Great Guy" or Not.!!!

    PRODUCE ON THE FIELD... Bottom Line.!!!

  7. Santiago 1314, March 15, 2023 at 10:09 p.m.

    No Adams nor Acosta.!?!?!?

    We Will finally see what Plan "C" is for #6
    Probably M-M-A 2.o {Double Pivot with Aaronson as AM}
    (Not sure Cardoso is "The Answer", but we should Try it, What about Tessman.???)

    Would have Preferred EPB over Ream; But I get the "Security Blanket" thing...
    Remember what I say; "IF REAM PLAYS, WE LOSE" (Especially at Left  Back)
    We Can't Play a High Line/GegenPress with him in the Back... He's Too Slow on the Turn and Chase. Therefore our Restraining Line has to be 20 yards Deeper, and this causes Too much Space and Seperation between Back Line and Front Press... Too much Space for even MMA !!!
    {Ask Van Gaal}
    Give him a "Farewell" Captain Start in the Home Game, and then only Bring him back as an Assistant Coach... His "Playing Time" would be better Spent on "Developmental Time" for EPB, CCV, McKenZIE, Trusty, MRob, Richards

  8. Kent James, March 15, 2023 at 10:38 p.m.

    This seems like the right approach with Gio Reyna; don't blame the son for the sins of the parents.

  9. frank schoon replied, March 16, 2023 at 12:24 p.m.

    Kent, he's not totally innocent of this for afterall his behavior in practice did not help. This kid in Holland would have been kicked off the national team for that behavior....

  10. Alan Blackledge replied, March 16, 2023 at 12:49 p.m.

    Agree wholeheartedly Kent. He behaved very immaturely was called on it and now must be given the opportunity for redemption! (His parents be damned)

  11. Bob Ashpole replied, March 16, 2023 at 5:24 p.m.

    Frank, Hudson was there. He says it was resolved in the locker room to his satisfaction. It's his team now. That should be good enough for you. Notice Hudson doesn't give any specifics about what happened in the locker room. I like his style.

  12. frank schoon replied, March 16, 2023 at 6:04 p.m.

    Bob, it is going to be touch and go. Whether it is his team, we'll see, who knows what's going to happen....I think Hudson, will feel a little iffy for he has not received final confirmation.....

  13. Wallace Wade, March 16, 2023 at 1:32 p.m.

    I wouldn't let him near the Program again, period.

  14. Wooden Ships replied, March 16, 2023 at 6:27 p.m.

    Wallace I feel that way towards Berhalter, not Gio. Reyna can do things no other player at the moment can. Of course the style of play chosen by Gregg, because he's not equipped to evolve our game, limited the influence Reyna can have. My preference very early on was using Reyna as the playmaker. MMA has not and will not produce the level of scoring necessary. During the Berhalter tenure I see no improvement in attacking. And, evidently it will take a manager with more gravitas then GB to get Pulisic off restarts. How in the hell don't we have a squad of guys that can strike balls properly in given situations. Get our most technical players on the field and maybe we can be multifaceted in our system of play. I'd also go with two strikers. There are a few other thoughts I'd try, including a sweeper. Bottom line Greg was a poor hire, not surprised in the then USSF makeup and we must get players on the field with touch, dribbling and passing skills so we can score at a higher clip. Need some old school blood making and demanding better accountability. 

  15. Santiago 1314 replied, March 17, 2023 at 2:27 p.m.

    Wooden, I wonder what a Sweeper would even Look like in Today's Game.???
    I would LOVE to see it...
    Do you play with a Man-to-Man Stopper then, or Double Stoppers w/ Wingbacks.???
    3-5-2  or No Wingbacks and 3-4-3.???
    I always preferred Man-to-Man on Defense and a SW to Cover...(Especially with our Goalkeepers Lack of Foot Skills)
    So, Depending upon the Opponent, you could be Really just playing with 2 Defenders.
    I really think this Could Suit the USA...
    Richards-SW // CCV-Stopper // Jedi-Dest as Wingbacks // Adams as #6
    McKenNIE-Musah as #8s // Reyna as #10 // CP as Low Forward // Weah as Hi-Forward

  16. R2 Dad, March 16, 2023 at 4:13 p.m.

    Too bad we don't have an aspirational coach/manager everyone would like to play for. Ancelotti, Zidane, Henry? They know how to deal with personalities and motivating all these guys having to schlep all the way back from Europe to play against CONCACRAP opponents on garbage fields and terrible officiating.

  17. Bob Ashpole replied, March 16, 2023 at 5:49 p.m.

    R2 Dad, CONCACAF isn't going to change. We need a coach who can handle CONCACAF, not just the top tier of Europe.

    From what I have heard the lower tiers of Europe are not much different than CONCACAF. And there is more match-fixing in Europe.

    When Frank talks about the need for former top players the examples he gives is as trainers--working directly with the players. I think of it as more mentoring than drilling. Being a head coach--aka manager--takes a different skill set. Knowing the game is important, but more important is managing the sporting side while still understanding the front office stuff. Former great players who also became great managers like Cruyff are rare.

    Training is like music. Just starting out it is easy to find a good teacher for you. The more you progress the more difficult it is to find a teacher who has something to teach you. So you get to the level of a professional soloist, who may be teaching young students themself, who do they turn to for their teacher? 

    I have the impression that there is some private lessons for keepers, but I don't know of any specific effort by an MLS club to provide top flight trainers within their clubs. I am not talking about somebody's coaching license. I am talking about first hand player knowledge. 

    In my music I got to the point where the type of teacher I needed would not want to teach me because I was an amateur. I wouldn't a good investment of their time for them. (At that level it isn't a matter of money.) But there are really great resources around. Soccer and music.

  18. humble 1 replied, March 17, 2023 at 2:01 p.m.

    Ironic is it not - regarding former top players giving back - Greg is the first coach of our MNT that played as a professional.  He is blazing the trail.  On that topic, I do not have a wealth of experience in soccer like many that author SA articles and contribute on this forum, however, I do know personally, four former pro players, each having played professional over a decade, one European, three Uruguayans, each world class youth coaches, one will coach the final of the UPSL Texas Cup in Dallas this weekend, another works as a Spanish  speaking analyst for Fox Deportes in Spanish, and not one of them could get traction legacy pay-to-play english speaking youth clubs.  Not one.  These are top class coaches and people.  Frank is right, more-over, the youth system is more broke than than people realize.  From my perspective, it is run, for the most part, there are exceptions, by people, who did not play the game at a high level, are afraid of those that did, have never developed a professional player at their clubs, and could not coach their way out of a paper bag.  It is really really bad here.  This is why, with DA and the $10 million USSF was sending it for over a decade and now MLS Next, and ECNL for Boys, there are fewer and fewer roster spots, minutes played in MLS every year.  The players going to Europe almost all followed some bespoke path, the system is broke, and failing miserably.  For me, Greg Berhalter is one of th exceptions, a former player, giving back and a good coach.  I appreciate the work he's done.  Have a nice day.

  19. humble 1 replied, March 17, 2023 at 2:05 p.m.

    sorry, fewer minutes played and roster spots for US DEVELOPED PLAYERS.  Thank you and as always, sorry about/grammar, spelling, I need an editor. 

  20. Santiago 1314 replied, March 17, 2023 at 2:31 p.m.

    At this Stage... I'm going for Henry... Someone that Could REALLY Demand and Implement; "Change the Way the World Sees US Soccer"
    Curtain is probably the Best American, with his "Wind them Up and Let them Play" Statement.

  21. Bob Ashpole replied, March 17, 2023 at 5:33 p.m.

    I don't think much of Gregg's coaching. Mostly I don't like his view of the game or his parental management style. I guess it is possible that his coaching is a reflection of USSF management's views of the game, rather than his own, but I doubt it. I don't think USSF would have hired him if he wasn't a "true believer" in the USSF conventional wisdom.

    As for being a professional player, Gregg was a piano carrier, not a piano player. I have played with some amateur players whose understanding of the game is much better and they are piano players.

    I think Gregg is a good coach, but not good enough to be our national team coach. Same with Vlatko for the WNT. I just don't know who of those available would be a better choice. I think Bradley, Arena, and Ellis proved that they could excell with US teams of professional athletes, but do we want to look backward even if those coaches would be willing to do another cycle?

    Have a realistic view of the ability of the current coaches is not a bad thing. The roadblock I see is USSF. USSF reminds me of the English FA of long ago. They want to control everything and their view of the game is, to be polite, flawed.

    Positional play scares people. Even if they do understand it and have the necessary soccer IQ, most people didn't have the skill needed to play that way. That means that they have to recruit players who are better than they were. A lot of people have egos that cannot handle that. It is something managers often do without thinking. They surround themselves with people who make them look good in comparison. It is simply human nature and cannot be compensated for if the tendancy is not recognized.

    It is no surprise when a former back gets along better with backs he coaches than playmakers.

  22. John Foust, March 16, 2023 at 8:54 p.m.

    I still maintain that Gio remains under parental influence and therefore the USMNT will have the Reyna Family Curse as long as any member of that family is associated with it. Cut him loose. He'll do fine I. Europe, make lots of money, and the US will be able to move on. Otherwise it will always be an unavoidable distraction, and the US will crash and burn in '26. And for Heaven's sake do NOT bring back Berhalter - fresh blood!

  23. R2 Dad replied, March 16, 2023 at 11:14 p.m.

    OR, get a coach who can manage to handle Gio and any other big talent that comes along. And maybe USSF doesn't insist every employee must live in Chicago? 

  24. Santiago 1314 replied, March 17, 2023 at 2:14 p.m.

    Maybe GIO should do a Carli Lloyd...
    She didn't Talk to her Family for TWELVE YEARS.!!!
    They are just Now, Re-Integrating.!?!?!?

  25. humble 1 replied, March 18, 2023 at 11:16 a.m.

    more often than not it is 'like-father-like-son', and, in this case, there are a lot of data points, public and otherwise, when connected, draw such a picture.  It can of course be wrong.  Gio will have the final say in that.  Wish him the best.  Talent is there, no doubt.  Good day.

  26. frank schoon, March 19, 2023 at 9:35 a.m.

    So Gio is really "a good guy", unless you mess with his playing time.   That would have been more apt to say....

    Besides ,I always look askance at a guy that carries with him a Louis Vuitton bag on the player's bus. Too much status seeking for me. I would rather see his ambitions of status displayed on the field.... 

  27. Santiago 1314 replied, March 19, 2023 at 3:46 p.m.

    i Always preferrd VERSACE.!!! ;0

  28. Bob Ashpole replied, March 20, 2023 at 12:01 a.m.

    Seriously, if he isn't getting paid, he shouldn't display any product brand. It is an economic betrayal of the companies who pay him to endorse their products.

    This is business only of course. Has nothing to do with soccer.

  29. frank schoon replied, March 20, 2023 at 8:48 a.m.

    Bob, True story. Around early 90's , I was in the Realtor office and I noticed a big, ugly,dark brown, plastic-looking bag, purse of the realtor.  My first impression was this poor woman realtor must have bought this bag (purse) at K-Mart, for she probably couldn't afford a nice Coach brand which is made of high quality leather. One day I pointed out to my wife the ugly bag/purse to my wife and she replied that it was a Luis Vuitton.. I never heard of Luis Vuitton, and besides I don't keep up with the latest women fashion. Since, i've seen a man ,once or twice, in all these years walking with one of those bags what I would call a woman's bag. Maybe Luis Vuitton expanded and went after them men, as well. So it is a standard joke in our home with the Louis Vuitton bag. 

    I almost fell out of my chair when  noticed Gio wearing his 'Louis' bag.  Sorry, I just can't believe Gio is walking with a 'Louis' bag. His looks needs to get more rugged, and who knows, maybe his Mom bought him the LV for Xmas...

  30. Bob Ashpole replied, March 20, 2023 at 4:02 p.m.

    Great story. I am just as clueless about what women are thinking, but also like you, I realize I am clueless. A little mystery in life is a good thing.

  31. frank schoon replied, March 20, 2023 at 5:24 p.m.

    Bob, 'Clueless'? You know how clueless I was in 1982. My roommate said he bought a fake Rolex.
    I replied , "what is a Rolex"? I just never traveled in those circles.   :)

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