Opinion: Borussia Dortmund shouldn’t move on from Gio Reyna just yet

Gio Reyna. (Photo by John Todd/USSF/Getty Images for USSF)
Gio Reyna. (Photo by John Todd/USSF/Getty Images for USSF) /

According to BILD, Borussia Dortmund are contemplating parting ways with United States international Giovanni Reyna.

Giovanni Reyna’s time at Borussia Dortmund might be coming to an end if reports by BILD are to be believed, with Die Schwarzgelben allegedly open to parting ways with the US international. Reyna joined Dortmund’s academy from NYCFC back in 2019, and worked his way into the first team after impressing at youth level.

The US international has long been seen as one of Dortmund’s future stars, but has often only shown his talent and ability in spurts, which has led to the player having trouble locking down a place in the starting 11. This is in part due to the fact that Reyna has faced adversity in the form of persistent injuries. During the course of the 2021/22 season for instance, Reyna was sidelined for a total of 34 games due to a variety of muscular injuries and fitness issues related to them, which is a hefty chunk of time for any player to not feature for their side, let alone one who is still developing.

This season, Reyna’s performances have been mainly off the bench as a super sub of sorts, with the US international not seen as a starting fixture in what Edin Terzić viewed as his “strongest side”. Despite this, Reyna did his best to make good on the minutes he was given, scoring 7 goals and assisting 4 across 30 appearances in all competitions. This is a solid return for a player who was not the first name on the team sheet.

It would seem this impact could possibly still not be enough to convince Dortmund’s hierarchy to keep hold of him if suitable offer arrives. The question is, would this be wise? Taking a look at the squad in it’s current state, the answer is no.

Dortmund have already lost quite a bit of midfield quality in terms of Jude Bellingham and Raphaël Guerreiro; players who were strong on the ball and technically sound. While Reyna’s performances haven’t been the most convincing at all times, he has an undeniable talent when it comes to driving the ball forward and dribbling past opponents. Allowing Reyna to leave would further thin-out Dortmund’s options in this department.

Furthermore, one of the key elements that Dortmund got right this season was having the depth to compete, which Reyna provided. Reyna came off the bench on numerous occasions to score critical goals that helped push Dortmund’s title charge forward. Having a player capable of doing this is important for any club looking to challenge for silverware.

In the hypothetical situation where Reyna would be sold however, I would find it concerning if Dortmund did so without identifying a replacement. While the club have players in both the positions Reyna can occupy (attacking midfield and out wide), his added presence will make sure to push the other’s to perform to the maximum of their abilities by providing stiff competition for places.

That being said, I still think Reyna has something to offer Dortmund, especially if he’s willing to work for his place in the starting 11 by initially playing a role off the bench and showing he’s capable of nailing down a starting spot. Reyna’s disposition towards this prospect would be an important factor as to whether Dortmund continue to work with him in the squad. If he were to maintain a consistent run of good form, I can still see him having a future in attacking midfield in particular, especially since Marco Reus won’t be around forever and the club will need to have plan for what comes after Dortmund’s captain is no longer there.

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While not having showed it on a consistent basis so far, its undeniable that Gio Reyna possesses the skills necessary to be an important player for Dortmund. It will be a question of what role Reyna is willing to accept, at least in the short term, that will be critical in Dortmund’s conversations regarding his future at the club.