James Sands (center) with Claudio Reyna and Patrick Vieira. (Photo courtesy of NYCFC)
Giovanni Reyna might not be a member of the New York City FC organization for long — he has received interest from Europe.
However, the 15-year-old son of City sporting director Claudio Reyna has impressed head coach Patrick Vieira.
Reyna is training with the team in Jacksonville, Fla.
“For a kid of 15, 16, he’s got a physical presence,” Vieira said during a Wednesday conference call. “His game understanding is really good – he can score goals, he understands the demands of the game tactically – he’s a really smart kid. He’s shown some really good stuff.”
James Sands, 17, signed with the team last year. The Rye, N.Y. native can play in the back or in the midfield and Vieira hasn’t made a final decision on which position would suit him best.
“James is still really young and we have to keep developing him in both positions,” he said. “It’s still too early to say where his best position is. We’ll work on him in central defense and central midfield. In a few years we’ll see where his best position is – right now, we’ll make him play in both.
“Our plan is not to sign young players just to sign them. It’s important for us to create a pathway. If we sign them, it’s because we strongly believe they can play in the first-team. There’s no point signing them otherwise.”