VANCOUVER, BC – Yordy Reyna has touched down in Vancouver. And yes, he answered the question you’ve all been asking – or, at least a lot of you have. It’s pronounced “Jordy.”
And, if all goes to plan, it’s a name you’ll want to remember.
The 5-foot-7 attacking midfielder/forward arrived in Vancouver on Saturday night from his hometown of Lima, Peru, trained with the team for the first time on Monday afternoon, and now he’s off to Portland, where Whitecaps FC will play three preseason friendlies over the next week leading up to the CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinals.
Vancouver Whitecaps FC head coach Carl Robinson said that Reyna will likely be “involved at some stage” in Portland, but they certainly won’t be rushing him.
This is, after all, an entirely new experience for the 23-year-old, who spent the last four seasons in Europe with Red Bull Salzburg, FC Liefering, SV Grodig, and RB Leipzig after beginning his professional career with Peruvian side Alianza Lima.
“It’s a good opportunity for me to challenge myself in a different league and hopefully get a lot of minutes,” Reyna told whitecapsfc.com through a translator. “I feel very comfortable with the Latin players. I need more time to get to know everyone, but I can see right away that it’s a good team. The city looks very beautiful. It’s cold, but very beautiful.”
Reyna said he had offers to stay in Austria. Although he doesn’t know much about Whitecaps FC as a club, he just felt like this was the right fit at this point in his career.
“It was a difficult decision, especially because of the language,” said Reyna, who Whitecaps FC acquired using Targeted Allocation Money. “I speak German. But it’s a good challenge for me to come here, as a person and player.”
So what kind of player are the ‘Caps getting?
Reyna said he sees himself as a “quick” attacking player who thrives in one v. one situations, not unlike fellow youngsters Alphonso Davies and Kekuta Manneh – setting up what could potentially be a lethal ‘Caps counter-attack. Robinson described him as a player who can beat opponents "not only with his passing, but also his dribbling" and someone who "like to run on beyond the centre forward." He is comfortable playing as a striker, attacking midfielder, or winger, and said he will be happy to play whatever position the coach decides.
“I want to just to do my best for the team,” Reyna said.
And at his best, Robinson said that Reyna is a player who will “get bums off seats.” No matter how you pronounce his name.