I was at the press conference in Germany where Claudio Reyna announced his retirement from international soccer. One statement he made intrigued me a little, though.
"We don’t have a major European championship or something where I felt in two years I could still be playing. But four years was a little too much. So it’s best just to stop now."
It was a large conference, and there were a bunch of journos asking questions, but even then, I nearly yelled out, "What about Gold Cup?" The obvious objection there would be that the strain of travel from Europe would be too much for Claudio.
Now that he's with the Red Bulls, though, that's not an issue. His ties to Bruce Arena and Bob Bradley go way back, so some persuasion there could be effective.
Though it doesn't get the respect of the European Championships, the Gold Cup is the regional championship for the U.S., the closest equivalent we have. It may be farfetched, but I think there's a chance Reyna might participate. I mean, if he implied he could still play internationally for two years, the Gold Cup is this year.
For any of those who think that the Gold Cup is a good time to experiment with young players, leaving Reyna out even if he wants to play, I disagree completely. This Gold Cup is the ticket to the Confed Cup, which would provide invaluable experience in the venues of the World Cup ahead of time. The U.S. should experiment at Copa America - the Gold Cup, we need to win. Reyna can still help the team do that. Especially against CONCACAF competition, I think it would be a nice hurrah for his USMNT career.