Gio Reyna Becomes Youngest American to Play in the Champions League

Gio Reyna’s name has been etched in the soccer history books…

The 17-year-old part-Argentine American soccer player made his Champions League debut on Tuesday for Borussia Dortmund against Paris Saint-Germain, becoming the youngest American to play in Champions League at 17 years and 97 days.

Gio Reyna

Reyna was promoted to the Dortmund senior squad in January after only having joined the club’s academy in the summer of 2019 and has since gained game time in every match. 

A member of the U.S. squad at last year’s Under-17 World Cup, Reyna made his senior team debut for Dortmund on January 18 in a Bundesliga match at Augsburg.

Reyna had already scored in Dortmund’s German Cupdefeat at Werder Bremenearlier this month, but was instrumental for his side on Tuesday as he set up Erling Haaland’s second goal in a 2-1 first-leg win over PSG.

At 17 years, 3 months. 5 days, Reyna bettered the mark for youngest American set by Gedion Zelalemwhen he played for Arsenalat 17 years, 317 days old. Chelsea star Christian Pulisicwas four days shy of his 18th birthday when he made his Champions League debut while with Dortmund in a group phase opener at Legia Warsawin 2016. Pulisic started and assisted on Dortmund’s fifth goal in a 6-0 win.

His father, USMNTgreat Claudio Reyna, appeared in eight Champions League group phase matches for Glasgow Rangersin 1999 and 2000 and also scored a key goal in a Champions League qualifier in 1999 against UEFA Cupchampion Parma. Claudio scored eight goals in 112 appearances for the U.S. from 1994 to 2006, appearing in three World Cups. Gio Reyna’s mother, Danielle Egan Reyna, scored one goal in six appearances for the U.S. women’s side in 2003.

Speaking to reporters after Tuesday’s match, Gio Reyna said he was proud the team got such an important victory and of his assist to Haaland for the winner, only two minutes after Neymar levelled the score.

“A lot of emotions are going through my head right now,” he said. “To get my Champions League debut against Paris was a dream come true for me. To get an assist was even better.

“We knew Paris are such a good team. And the result is the most important thing. The way we fought as a team was so impressive,” he said. “Our work ethic and our will to win games really showed tonight.”

“It’s a super pass from Reyna,” Dortmund coach Lucien Favresaid of the ball that set up Haaland’s goal. “He plays it in brilliantly. He orients the ball very, very quickly.

Messi Makes the UEFA’s Shortlist for the 2015-16 Goal of the Season Award

Lionel Messi is gol oriented.…

The 29-year-oldArgentine soccer player and FC Barcelona star is among the 10 players who’ve made the UEFA‘s shortlist for the 2015-16 Goal of the Season award, covering last season’s European club competitions and the Euro 2016 finals.

Lionel Messi

Messi’s flick past Roma goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny after a team move involving Neymar and Luis Suarez in the 6-1 Champions League group-stage victory is on the list alongside Atletico Madrid midfielder Saul Niguez‘s solo effort against Bayern Munich in the semifinal first leg.

Gonzalo Higuain‘s solo run and fierce strike for Napoli against Legia Warsaw in the Europa League is also a contender, with spectacular efforts from Juan Cuadrado and Stephan Lichtsteiner for Juventus also recognised.

The goals chosen from Euro 2016 are Xherdan Shaqiri‘s acrobatic late equalizer for Switzerland against Poland and Marek Hamsik‘s strike for Slovakia against Russia.

Lionel Messi

That means Zoltan Gera‘s strike for Hungary against Portugal and Cristiano Ronaldo‘s header for Portugal against Wales — voted first and second respectively by fans for Euro 2016’s Goal of the Tournament award — are not under consideration.

Also nominated for the Goal of the Season award are Barcelona youngster Carlos Alena‘s mazy dribble against Roma in the UEFA Youth League, Camille Abily‘s overhead kick for Lyon against Sparta Prague in the Women’s Champions League and Ricardinho‘s special strike for Portugal against Serbia at Futsal EURO 2016.

Fans can vote online at UEFA.com until Aug. 23 to choose their favorite goal from the shortlist chosen by UEFA‘s expert panel.

A similar online vote has been launched allowing supporters to choose their Save of the Season.