Gio Reyna is Ready to Return

Giovanni Reyna (goal.com)

Borussia Dortmund’s young midfielder, Giovanni Reyna, is ready to rock Bundesliga again after recovering from a long injury since last September.

Gio Reyna has been declared fully fit from his hamstring injury when he played for the United States national team a couple of months ago. Even more, Reyna has already got his first full 90-minute experience in this season’s Bundesliga on 20 March.

“I’m happy, I really have to say that. To see Gio in training, how he finds the spaces, how he solves one-on-one situations, how he also works against the ball: It’s nice that we have this quality player back. That’s important for us.”
— Marco Rose, when he was asked about Reyna’s condition last February

The name “Reyna” is no stranger to European football. It was his father, Claudio, who first plied his trade in the continent. During his playing time, Reyna Sr. played for Bayer Leverkusen, VfL Wolfsburg, Glasgow Rangers, Sunderland, and also Manchester City.

Gio Reyna himself has been one of Dortmund’s main players in recent seasons. The American youngster made his debut for Die Schwarzgelben in January 2020 when he was just 17 years and 66 days old. That feat also made him the youngest American to play in Bundesliga, breaking his compatriot’s record who currently plays for Chelsea, Christian Pulisic.

The wonderkid’s name skyrocketed even higher when he made his Champions League debut just a month after. In that match, Reyna who was started as a sub against Paris Saint-Germain successfully made an assist to his team’s talisman, Erling Braut Haaland. Only nine minutes after he put on the Dortmund jersey on the grandest stage of European football.

It’s not just that, though. Reyna has also broken some records since his debut. First, he’s made himself the first American to create a hat-trick of assists in any of European’s elite leagues since 2008. And secondly, his success of being the youngest player to reach 50 games in the Bundesliga. He broke this record last August, aged just 18 years nine months and 14 days.

“He moves cleverly between the lines, but also cuts inside from wide positions, poses a goal threat and has a slyness about him. We would like to have him back.”
— Sebastian Kehl

The young midfielder is a versatile and clever player. This is shown by his capability to play in various positions. So far, Reyna has played 43 times as an attacking midfielder, 28 times as a left-winger, 14 times as a right-winger, and four times as a central midfielder.

His contribution is also nothing short of impressive. So far, Reyna has played in 75 matches for the team based at the Signal Iduna Park stadium. From those matches, he has scored 10 goals and made 18 assists in all competitions. This is really impressive for a teenager like him.

Reyna’s return is something that is really missed by Dortmund’s fans. It’s growing even more as they are only separated by six points from the current league leaders, FC Bayern Munchen.

The wonderkid’s presence surely can help to ease the burden from Haaland’s shoulders. Currently, the Norwegian is Dortmund’s top scorer (16 goals) and standing third in his team’s assist chart (six) in the league. On top of that, his superb vision and high distribution quality will be crucial for his team, who are on a hunt for their first Bundesliga title since 2012.

I’m Petrick Sinuraya, a 24-year-old football writer based in Indonesia.

For inquiries, please contact me at petricksinuraya@gmail.com.

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