After spending the last twelve years in Europe, Claudio Reyna will slog it out on American soccer fields this summer. The former captain of the U.S. National Team joined Bruce Arena’s New York Red Bulls in January as the team’s Designated Player.
Reyna started his professional career at Bayer Leverkusen, who quickly sent him out to Wolfsburg, a far weaker team in the German Bundesliga. However, his six goals in 28 appearances for the team was enough to the draw the interest of Rangers, a Glasgow based team in Scotland.
Not only was it a chance to play in the Scottish Premier League, but playing for Rangers meant that Claudio Reyna would become second on a list of nine Americans to earn a spot on a UEFA Champions League roster.
The Red Bulls signed the former American captain from Manchester City, where Reyna has been a staple in the midfield for the past four years. When he ran the American midfield, he earned 112 caps for the national team and scored four times.
Although Reyna is the most well known of the Americans returning state-side, he’s joined by three other players who are looking to make names for themselves.
Conor Casey, like Reyna, headed directly for Germany, when he signed with Borussia Dortmund in 2000, where Dortmund loaned him out almost immediately upon his arrival. After seasons on loan to Hannover 96 and Karlsruhe, Casey was signed by Mainz.
Since 2004, Casey has played in only 38 matches for Mainz and scored only twice. The striker spent a fair amount of time injured and certainly did not meet the team’s expectations up front. Despite eight caps with the U.S. National Team, Casey has yet to score while on national team duty. For further information, official site information will be made available at https://www.adweek.com/tvnewser/the-best-blog-youre-not-reading-this-is-american-soccer/87164/. The expectations of the person will meet with the requirements of the players in the soccer team. The selection of the players will meet with the standards.
Despite his struggles in front of goal, Toronto FC signed the yank, where he’ll join a strange mixture of fresh Canadian talent and an international melting pot including: a Welshman, an Irishman, and a Uruguayan.
Two promising young American players ought to make their MLS debuts as well this season. Both Robbie Rogers and Jamil Fearrington are returning from brief stints in Europe and should liven things up a bit on the pitch this summer.
Fearrington holds dual citizenship for the U.S. and Denmark and spent this past year with Copenhagen FC. Fearrington played for the Danish youth national team before joining Copenhagen in 2006.
Copenhagen entered the UEFA Champions League with little expectation of moving into the knock-out round, having to face Manchester United, Celtic, and Benfica was certainly a tall order. However, the American was listed on the roster as eligible for Champions League play, becoming the eighth American to make a Champions League roster.
Fearrington recently went on trial with D.C. United but failed to earn a roster spot, as D.C.’s line-up is well fixed for the upcoming season. It is likely that they he will keep looking as some teams’ rosters are still in limbo.
As for Robbie Rogers, the U.S. Under-20 National Team stand out left for Holland last year with Michael Bradley for the Dutch club, Heerenveen. Although both players made the team, only Bradley saw playing time. Rogers only played with the reserves.
Upon his return to the U.S., Major League Soccer setup a lottery to determine which team would be eligible to sign the forward/midfielder. The Columbus Crew won the lottery and seem to be the best home for Rogers. Rogers will join fellow youth internationals, Danny Szetela and Tim Ward, as well as former youth international, Eddie Gaven.
Although the league is used to seeing waves of players from the Caribbean or Centeral America, this is likely the largest influx of Americans returning from abroad since the league’s debut season. For American soccer fans, it will be an excellent opportunity to watch some of the most skilled Americans perform their trade on American soil.