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Kirsten Fleming


Negative sports parents are as American as apple pie and Hulk Hogan.

These days, viral videos of adults brawling on sidelines, assaulting officials or just plain misbehaving are so widespread, they could fill a every day slot on SportsCenter.

And then there’s Claudio and Danielle Reyna, the parents of 20-year-old Gio Reyna, who is generally touted as the future of the United States men’s national group.

So elite in their plotting, scheming and overreaching on their son’s behalf, they deserve to have their jerseys retired in the undesirable sports parents hall of fame.

That is the only verdict 1 could attain right after reading the report commissioned by US Soccer into the Gregg Berhalter and Reyna scandal — a debacle that served as an ugly postmortem to a reasonably promising Planet Cup functionality in Qatar.

For the uninitiated, the Reynas — upset more than their son’s lack of playing time on the globe stage — threatened to destroy the USMNT coach’s profession by resurrecting, circulating and weaponizing a violent episode from his previous.

Claudio and Danielle Reyna had been involved in the incident involving USMNT coach Gregg Berhalter.Sports Illustrated through Getty Photos

The USMNT scandal involving Gregg Berhalter and the Reynas overshadowed their Planet Cup functionality.Getty Photos

Even though a schism involving the Reynas and Berhalter had been brewing given that the Wales game, the lunacy really kicked off right after Berhalter, devoid of naming names, revealed that he practically sent a player property from Qatar simply because he didn’t meet expectations.

Right after the comments, which had been created at a leadership conference and supposed to be “explicitly off the record,” went public, a lot of deduced that he was referring to Gio. And an angry Danielle referred to as the United States Soccer Federation’s sporting director Earnie Stewart to drop a nuclear bomb.

She told Stewart that Berhalter “beat the living sh-t out of” his then-girlfriend and future wife Rosalind (nee Santana) in an alcohol-fueled incident in 1992.

In addition, investigators stated Claudio menacingly told yet another official, “[Y]ou guys do not even know what we know about Gregg.”

Gio Reyna, a 20-year-old, has been labeled as the future of the United States men’s national group.Getty Photos

At the time, the Berhalters had been freshmen soccer players at the University of North Carolina. The disturbing allegations sparked an independent investigation by law firm Alston &amp Bird.

Berhalter was forthcoming. He stated that in the quick aftermath, he reported himself to his coach, sought counseling and opted to do neighborhood service at a women’s teenage correctional facility in Durham. It was by no means reported to police.

According to Berhalter’s wife, the violent tangle was an isolated incident.

The identical can not be stated for the Reynas’ meddling. The report revealed that Claudio, a former U.S. Captain, had lengthy been a serial nuisance, overstepping boundaries to influence USSF going back to 2016. But the firm concluded the Reynas’ behavior did not rise to the level of extortion.

Possibly it wasn’t criminal, but it was so diabolical and twisted, it could have been a dark thriller scripted by Hollywood.

The USMNT sophisticated to the Planet Cup’s Round of 16 ahead of losing to the Netherlands.Getty Photos

Right after all, the couples are longtime pals. Berhalter and Claudio played higher college ball collectively and the latter served as finest man at the Berhalters’ wedding. Rosalind and Danielle had been teammates and roommates at UNC and remained close.

This ought to be a cautionary tale to the legions of sharp elbowed, entitled parents who have led to a rot in this country’s youth sports culture.

The attempted hit on Berhalter backfired spectacularly. He emerged searching like the poster boy of contrition — a particular person of character who is not only match to lead the US on the field, but even additional so off it.

At 19, he created a pretty undesirable error. He confronted it, owned it and took actions to guarantee it didn’t occur once more.

Gregg Berhalter admitted to the incident involving his now-wife that occurred when the pair attended the University of North Carolina.Getty Photos

People today are flawed. And if we’re not permitted to stumble and make amends for our missteps and sins, then what are we even carrying out right here?

Let’s hope the Reynas are afforded the identical grace that they had been unwilling to extend to Berhalter.

And that their son, who is returning to the USMNT, is in a position to forge his personal path, independent of his helicopter parents. current-instance-of-terrible-sports-parents-in-usmnt-scandal/?utm_supply=url_sitebuttons&amputm_medium=web site%20buttons&amputm_campaign=web site%20buttons

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