Wednesday, June 18, 2008

100 Cap Club: Claudio Reyna

When Landon Donovan earned his membership into the ‘100 Cap Club’ in the 0-0 draw against No. 1-ranked Argentina – becoming the fourth youngest player in soccer history to achieve that mark! - he joined 10 American men in this highly exclusive fraternity. Each U.S. player before him reached the century mark in a unique and, in some cases, historic way. With Donovan’s story now told, has set out to provide a chronicle of the memorable ways in which the previous 10 players joined the elite group who have proudly worn the jersey at least 100 times for the United States.

Claudio Reyna
Caps: 111
First Cap: Jan. 15, 1994
100th Cap: June 2, 2004 vs. Honduras
Era: 1994-2006

One of the most decorated players in U.S. history, long-time team captain Claudio Reyna became the seventh U.S. player to earn 100 caps in the friendly against Honduras, just 11 days before the 2006 World Cup qualifying games began. In the 4-0 victory against Honduras, Reyna shared the spotlight with teammate Brian McBride, who notched both first half goals. Reyna earned his 16th career assist on a Tony Sanneh header, the fourth and final goal of the match. Afterwards, Reyna’s No. 10 jersey was presented to the National Soccer Hall of Fame.

Reyna earned his first international cap on Jan. 15, 1994 in an exhibition against Norway. The U.S. coach at the time was Bora Milutinovic, who, curiously enough, was present for Reyna’s 100th - this time coaching Honduras. The midfield maestro’s 13-year career is replete with achievements that included three World Cup teams and two Olympic Squads. In 2002, he was the first U.S. player ever to be named to FIFA’s All World Cup First Team. His play in 31 World Cup qualifying games are a team-best, shared by Kasey Keller and Eddie Pope. Reyna’s 112 caps ranks fourth all-time in U.S. Men’s National Team history, and his 19 career assists ranks third.

Listen to podcast with Claudio Reyna here.

Reyna on the milestone:
“One cap would’ve been a dream growing up, so to be able to play in four World Cups and Olympics, all that was really icing on the cake. Besides the honor, I think it’s the level you have to maintain to get that many games for your country. I think it’s a special achievement for anyone to reach that milestone.”

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