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Gregg Berhalter understands why Gio Reyna may leave Dortmund

SAN ANTONIO (AP) — U.S. coach Gregg Berhalter understands why Gio Reyna may leave Borussia Dortmund during the January transfer window.

The 21-year-old midfielder has started just one Bundesliga match this season, playing the first half at Eintracht Frankfurt on Oct. 29. Reyna has made eight substitute league appearances and has played just 238 Bundesliga minutes this season under coach Edin Terzic.

“Any professional who’s competitive wants to be on the field,” Berhalter said Friday. “This is a case where Gio hasn’t been getting the game time that he wants and potentially (is) looking for alternate options, and that’s completely understandable.”

A son of former U.S. captain Claudio Reyna and American midfielder Danielle Egan, Gio Reyna in 2020 became at 17 the youngest American to debut in the Bundesliga.

He was limited to a pair of substitute appearances at the 2022 World Cup, and a feud developed between the Reyna family and Belhalter that caused Berhalter to be replaced by interim coaches for much of last year. Berhalter resumed coaching in September and Reyna played four matches with the U.S. in October and November.

“We support him in his quest to get on the field regularly and (are) looking forward to to the outcome of that,” Berhalter said.

Berhalter spoke a day ahead of the Americans' 2024 opener against Slovenia on Saturday. The match is not on a FIFA date, which meant European-based players were not released. Up to 16 players could make their U.S. debuts.

Veterans, aiming for the 2026 World Cup, will return for the CONCACAF Nations League final four in March and the Copa América in June.

“Development takes time. You still have 2 1/2 years. I’m sure there are players that will emerge that were not even on the radar right now," Berhalter said. "We have a strong starting 11, and it’s really hard to displace some of those players.”

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AP soccer: https://apnews.com/hub/soccer