Erling Haaland

Reyna
Getty Images

Gio Reyna dubbed ‘The American Dream’ after dazzling display

Leave a comment

Gio Reyna has been dubbed ‘The American Dream’ after a dazzling display on his full Bundesliga debut for Borussia Dortmund.

Reyna, 17, set up Erling Haaland for the first goal in Borussia Dortmund’s 2-0 win at RB Leipzig on Saturday and his assist was a thing of beauty.

The way he delicately flicked the ball to Haaland was instinctive and the feeling at Dortmund is that Gio Reyna can become an even better talent than Christian Pulisic.

That sound you can hear is USMNT fans screaming in delight, while these words for Haaland will only further add to the hype around Claudio Reyna’s son.

“I called him ‘The American Dream’ before and it’s true. He’s 17, what he’s doing on the pitch is amazing,” Haaland said. “He has a huge future in front of him.”

As for Reyna, the teenager was full of smiles after his first start in the Bundesliga and his partnership with fellow teenager Haaland is one which has Dortmund’s fans salivating.

“I could have got a few more (assists) maybe a goal or another assist,” Reyna said. “I am happy to help the team and give Erling the pass and it was a good finish… It is pretty easy, you just pass it to him and he scores! That’s what I did today. It is easy to play with him and it is fun.”

The victory secured second place for Dortmund in the Bundesliga and even though Bayern Munich kicked on and have been unstoppable since the restart, Dortmund’s young team have had plenty of impressive displays.

‘The American Dream’ is alive and well with Gio Reyna in Dortmund.

Bundesliga wrap: Reyna assists as Dortmund clinches 2nd; Richards debuts

Reyna assist video
AP Photo/Jens Meyer, Pool
Leave a comment

The Bundesliga’s top four picture is a lot clearer on a day that Americans danced through many of the matches on the penultimate match day of the season.

[ MORE: Brighton-Arsenal recapSpurs-Man Utd recap ]

USMNT teen prospect Giovanni Reyna made his first start and got his first assist, 20-year-old Chris Richards saw his first Bayern Munich league minutes, and several other American mainstays logged minutes across Germany.

RB Leipzig 0-2 Borussia Dortmund

Giovanni Reyna’s first Bundesliga start was a good one, the 17-year-old American setting up Erling Haaland for the first of 2 goals that sealed BVB’s second-place standing this season.

Haaland’s second goal came off a Julian Brandt feed, as Dortmund’s team is loaded with youth even with Jadon Sancho seemingly set for a summer sale. Haaland had no mercy on his former Red Bull family and now has 13 Bundesliga goals in 14 appearances since arriving from Salzburg in January.

Leipzig will finish top four with a point at Augsburg next week or dropped points from Borussia Monchengladbach or Bayer Leverkusen.

Reyna went 81 minutes, completing 86 percent of his passes including his only long ball. He converted four of five dribbles, won 10 of 17 duels, drew three fouls, and was credited with three tackles (SofaScore).

American midfielder Tyler Adams was a halftime sub for Leipzig, entering with the score 1-0. He won 2-of-3 duels, connected on 3-of-4 distance passes, made two interceptions and two tackles.

Supreme calmness and smarts on the assist, as Reyna darts into the box and knows where to find Haaland with his first touch.

Paderborn 1-3 Borussia Monchengladbach

Gladbach continues to control its top four destiny following a straight-forward win over already-relegated Paderborn, who took a red card with less than a half hour to play.

The visitors led 2-1 at that point on goals from Patrick Herrmann and Lars Stindl, the latter adding another on a Ramy Bensebaini assist with 17 minutes remaining on the clock.

Hertha Berlin 2-0 Bayer Leverkusen

Dodi Lukebakio had a goal and an assist as Bruno Labbadia’s Hertha continued its fine post-pause play and limited Bayer’s top four hopes to just that with one week to play.

Bayern Munich 3-1 Freiburg

The champions indoctrinated some new blood after building a 3-1 halftime lead on two goals and an assist from Robert Lewandowski.

American center back Chris Richards, 20, made his Bundesliga debut in the 84th minute of the win, completing all four of his passes and losing his only duel. Ex-Southampton and Chelsea man Jamal Musiala, 17, also made his Bundesliga debut.

Joshua Kimmich scored Bayern’s other goal.

Here’s what Richards told CBS’ Roger Gonzalez after the game:

“I was very excited when I heard my name to come over to the bench. Once I got the instructions from the coach then the nerves started to kick in, but after my first action I felt right at home.”

 

Hoffenheim 4-0 Union Berlin

Four different players scored as Hoffenheim clinched a place in the Europa League. Union is guaranteed a bottom-half finish but won’t care: There will be a second season in the top flight.

Mainz 3-1 Werder Bremen

Bremen now needs help from Union Berlin to avoid its first season in the second tier since 1980 after three different Mainz players scored to key a 3-1 win.

In-form Davy Klaassen set up Bremen’s lone goal from Yuya Osako, and American forward Josh Sargent’s good day up top wasn’t enough to produce a result. Sargent took two shots, completed two of three dribbles, and won five of nine duels as center forward.

Fortuna Dusseldorf 1-1 Augsburg

Fortuna’s point coupled with Werder Bremen’s loss means the hosts need to match or better Bremen’s final week result to avoid automatic relegation and contest the playoff against 2.Bundesliga’s third-place finisher. USMNT midfielder Alfredo Morales was an unused sub in the draw, and Rouwen Hennings was again Fortuna’s scorer.

Schalke 1-4 Wolfsburg

Wolfsburg is headed back to the Europa League after clobbering woeful Schalke. Wout Weghorst scored two more goals to pace the visitors.

USMNT center back John Brooks made his 12th-straight start in the win, helping to limit Schalke to zero big chances (SofaScore). International teammate Weston McKennie went 90 minutes in the loss, picking up a yellow card, a blocked shot, an interception, and two tackles. He won 10 of 20 duels, drew two fouls, and fouled three times himself.

Koln 1-1 Eintracht Frankfurt

Eintracht had the better of play but needed a 72nd-minute Bas Dost goal to take a point after Florina Kainz gave the hosts a lead before halftime. Neither team is going to Europe nor the second tier.

STANDINGS

Team GP W D L GF GA GD Home Away PTS
 Bayern Munich 33 25 4 4 96 32 64 13-2-2 12-2-2 79
 Borussia Dortmund 33 21 6 6 84 37 47 11-3-2 10-3-4 69
 RB Leipzig 33 17 12 4 79 36 43 7-8-2 10-4-2 63
 Mönchengladbach 33 19 5 9 64 39 25 11-2-3 8-3-6 62
 Bayer Leverkusen 33 18 6 9 60 44 16 8-4-4 10-2-5 60
 VfL Wolfsburg 33 13 10 10 48 42 6 4-7-5 9-3-5 49
 1899 Hoffenheim 33 14 7 12 49 53 -4 7-1-9 7-6-3 49
 SC Freiburg 33 12 9 12 44 47 -3 8-2-6 4-7-6 45
 Eintracht Frankfurt 33 12 6 15 56 58 -2 7-4-5 5-2-10 42
 Hertha BSC Berlin 33 11 8 14 47 57 -10 6-3-8 5-5-6 41
 FC Schalke 04 33 9 12 12 38 54 -16 5-7-5 4-5-7 39
 1. FC Union Berlin 33 11 5 17 38 58 -20 7-3-6 4-2-11 38
 FSV Mainz 05 33 11 4 18 44 64 -20 5-2-10 6-2-8 37
 1. FC Köln 33 10 6 17 50 63 -13 6-4-7 4-2-10 36
 FC Augsburg 33 9 9 15 44 61 -17 5-5-6 4-4-9 36
 Fortuna Düsseldorf 33 6 12 15 36 64 -28 4-6-7 2-6-8 30
 Werder Bremen 33 7 7 19 36 68 -32 1-3-12 6-4-7 28
 SC Paderborn 33 4 8 21 35 71 -36 2-2-13 2-6-8 20

Preview: Borussia Dortmund v. Hertha Berlin

Borussia Dortmund v. Hertha preview, how to watch
Photo by Alexandre Simoes/Borussia Dortmund via Getty Images
Leave a comment

Four Bundesliga teams are unbeaten in their last five matches and Hertha Berlin is the unlikeliest of the bunch.

They’ll tangle with Borussia Dortmund at the Westfalenstadion on Saturday in the latest challenge of the Bruno Labaddia era in Berlin.

[ BUNDESLIGA: Week 30 preview and predictions ]

Labbadia is Hertha’s third manager of the season and Hertha has played a scrappy brand of football that has punched and counter-punched under his tutelage. That doesn’t mean they’ve failed to find finish, as Liverpool loanee Marko Grujic and Brazilian youngster Matheus Cunha have been potent.

Borussia Dortmund is a bigger ask, though Hertha made RB Leipzig make mistakes in a 2-2 tie.

[ LIVE: Bundesliga scores, stats ]

Will it be able to get a result at the Westfalenstadion? Perhaps this is a bridge too far, because Dortmund’s shown an explosive offense and its defense has been strong far more often than not this season.

That said, Erling Haaland is just returning to fitness and has just one goal since the league’s restart from the coronavirus pause. Mats Hummels will miss with a yellow card suspension and Marco Reus still isn’t back.

Maybe American teen Giovanni Reyna will get prolonged run along with Jadon Sancho. We’ll see!

Borussia Dortmund v. Hertha Berlin, how to watch

  • TV Channels: FS2
  • Stream LiveVia Fox Soccer
  • Americans Abroad: Giovanni Reyna (Dortmund)
  • When: Saturday, June 6 – 12:30 p.m. ET: Dortmund v. Hertha

3 things learned: Bayern wins in Dortmund

Bayern Munich
Federico Gambarini/DPA via AP, Pool
Leave a comment

Bayern Munich put a stranglehold on its eighth-straight Bundesliga title by outlasting Borussia Dortmund 1-0 on Tuesday in a tense Klassiker at the Westfalenstadion.

[ MORE: Latest Bundesliga news | Current table ]

Joshua Kimmich’s delightful first half goal did the trick in driving Bayern’s table advantage over its rivals to seven points. Bayern does have a tricky remaining six matches, but seven points on the field is huge.

[ WATCH: Kimmich’s amazing goal ]

Dortmund could sink into third if RB Leipzig wins its midweek match.


Three things we learned

1. Bayern does it again with Kimmich at the wheel: Eight-straight titles. That’s what’s likely coming to Munich at the end of this season as it will finish the midweek matches with a 7-point lead on the field and six matches to play. Bayern was solid after weathering an early storm, and will be worthy champions. Now unbeaten in 14 with 13 wins in the streak, Bayern is so much better under Hansi Flick in what is the manager’s first time managing above Germany’s fourth tier.

There are few players in the world like Joshua Kimmich, who you imagine could play anywhere on the field for almost anyone. The 25-year-old German national teamer spun an incredible goal to give Bayern a halftime lead. Kimmich entered the match leading Bayern in key passes per game and second in total passes per outing, while stilling hitting on 90 percent of his passes.

2. Poor planning limits Dortmund’s chances: Dortmund’s best two weapons are Erling Haaland and Jadon Sancho, two of the best young weapons in the world. They look their best when the other wing is Julian Brandt, who is in fine form. Sancho has reportedly fought fitness issues but was healthy enough to go 25 minutes at the weekend. Favre opted not to start Sancho, but brought him on at halftime with the score 1-0 to the visitors. He brought him on for Brandt, which means his top trio didn’t play together. When Haaland came off for Giovanni Reyna in the 71st, that meant his top two players played 26 minutes together in their biggest game of the season.

3. Should this have been a penalty, or at least reviewed? Because it wasn’t, and it wasn’t. One thing’s for sure: You’d want it for your team, and it sure looked like Haaland had picked his spot.

Americans Abroad: Reyna’s first Klassiker started well with his earning a dangerous free kick within a minute of subbing into the game. He finished with 15 touches and completed all 13 of his passes including his only attempted long ball

Man of the Match: Kimmich.


Maybe it was the difference in quality of each side’s first two post-coronavirus pauise opponents, but Dortmund was better out of the gate.

It was Bayern who’d find the first danger, Kingsley Coman setting up Serge Gnabry to beat BVB goalkeeper Roman Burki. But Łukasz Piszczek cleared off the line and it remained 0-0 deep into the half.

Dortmund’s Julian Brandt and Thorgan Hazard tried to set-up Erling Haaland twice at the half-hour mark, but the striker flubbed a left-footed hit from an acute angle and the second chance was intercepted.

Bayern got its opener from perhaps the most overlooked mega talent in the world; Kimmich spun a high chip off a Coman lay-off, and Burki could only slap it into the goal.

Lucien Favre put Jadon Sancho into the match at halftime, begging the question of why he was fit to go potentially go 45 minutes but no more.

Michael Dahoud ripped a 20-yard shot at Manuel Neuer in the first five minutes of the second half.

BVB finally found Haaland in a promising spot, and his low drive took a turn off Jerome Boateng’s elbow to go out for a corner. It was apparently not reviewed, and the corner came to nothing.

Haaland would require a sub in the 72nd minute, and it was American teen Reyna. This meant that Haaland and Sancho were together for 26 minutes in the side’s biggest match of the season.

Dahoud forced another strong parry out of Neuer with 10 minutes to play.

Report: Haaland’s Dortmund release clause inactive for 2 years

Erling Haaland
Photo by Peter Steffen/picture alliance via Getty Images
Leave a comment

If someone wants to buy Erling Haaland from Borussia Dortmund soon, it’s going to take the big bucks.

A report from The London Evening Standard says that Haaland’s $82 million release clause isn’t active until 2022. His contract runs through the 2023-24 season, so he won’t even be entering the final year of his deal, either.

Now that also assumes that Haaland will want to leave BVB any time soon, the 19-year-old lighting up the Bundesliga and driving the club in a title fight with Bayern Munich.

[ BUNDESLIGA: Week 27 predictions and preview ]

BVB has eight wins and one loss in nine Bundesliga matches with Haaland on the pitch, the teen scoring 10 times with three assists. He also scored twice over two legs against PSG in the Champions League, and once in BVB’s German Cup exit at the hands of Werder Bremen.

Throw in a torrid blazing season with Red Bull Salzburg before his January move to Germany, and Haaland has scored 41 times with 10 assists in 34 appearances. Ten of those outings were 45 minutes or less.

So it’s very difficult to imagine Haaland won’t keep scoring. If it’s two years until the $82 million is a figure, what could tempt Dortmund into making a deal? If not for Ousmane Dembele’s $134 million move from BVB to Barcelona and concerns about the market after the coronavirus pandemic, you’d bet on it being an outgoing German transfer record.

And that’s if the deal were to happen now, not after 1-2 more seasons of reliable scoring before the age of 21. Again, this all assumes Haaland doesn’t fall in love with Dortmund while helping the club to trophies, which would be great to see in a one-horse Bundesliga with Bayern currently chasing its eighth-straight title.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ] 

As an aside consider, the rise of Haaland’s transfer ‘value’ in less than three seasons. Moves inside Norway from Bryne to Molde in 2017 for barely six figures in euros, then to Salzburg for less than $9 million in January 2019. BVB reportedly paid $22 million to get him in January 2020 and we’re talking almost four times that to get in on the bidding any time soon.

The rise is possibly more amazing as that of Kylian Mbappe, who at the same basic stage of his career had 27 goals and 16 assists in 60 matches with Monaco and 21 and 15 in 44 matches during his first season at PSG. The players aren’t like-for-like yet, as Mbappe’s playmaking game has been on show along with his ability to finish. We’ve argued that Mbappe is worth any fee relative to the sick spending in soccer. Haaland can’t be too far behind.

If Liverpool, Real Madrid, or the handful of other suitors who can afford his services are interested, they’re going to break some sort of record to land him.