NYCFC academy alum Giovanni Reyna earns Borussia Dortmund promotion to permanent first-team member
Just over six months after New York City FC academy product Giovanni Reyna made the move to Borussia Dortmund, the 18-year-old has been promoted to pemanent first-team status at with the traditional Bundesliga power.
Reyna, whose father Claudio is an all-time US national team great and current Austin FC technical director, made the move from NYCFC's academy on July 1, and had already been named to Dortmund's 31-man UEFA Champions League roster. On the field, he has featured mainly for Dortmund's U-19 side, scoring eight goals in 16 appearances between all competitions.
(Claudio was NYCFC's technical director at the time Giovanni departed for Dortmund, leaving for the Austin post later last year.)
Giovanni was included in Dortmund's first-team camp during the Bundesliga winter break, and over the weekend he scored a goal and had an assist in a 4-2 friendly win against Eredivisie side Feynoord. His overall showing in the camp in Marbella, Spain, convinced club sporting director Michael Zorc into a promotion.
"He presented himself well in Marbella, that's why we want to put him on a much higher level at training," Zorc told the Bundesliga website. "We want to develop him to a full-fledged player of Borussia Dortmund."
Reyna — who also appeared in all three games for the USA in the 2019 FIFA U-17 World Cup — is expected to continue playing mainly for Dortmund's U-19s for now while he trains in a first-team setting. But his trajectory is reminiscent of USMNT and Chelsea star Christian Pulisic's early time at Dortmund.
Pulisic joined the Bundesliga academy set-up just ahead of his 17th birthday in 2015, and also used winter camp to earn a first-team promotion. By the following season, he was playing exclusively with the first team, making 29 Bundesliga appearances (15 starts) and getting 10 more games in the UEFA Champions League as Dortmund reached the quarterfinals.