Ricardo Pepi HUNG UP on Gregg Berhalter when told he is from the US World Cup team
Ricardo Pepi HINGED UP to Gregg Berhalter when he called to tell him he’d been left out of the US World Cup squad… and the under-fire coach is now under investigation by US Soccer for killing his wife in a drunken 1991 quarrel occurred
Ricardo Pepi hung up with Gregg Berhalter when the under-fire manager informed him he had not been included in the USA’s World Cup squad for the 2022 tournament in Qatar.
Speaking on a podcast for Dutch club Groningen, for which Pepi currently plays, he was unfazed by Berhalter’s decision.
“I remember the moment clearly – I was on the phone with the national team coach, he said I wasn’t in the squad so I just hung up,” said Pepi.
One of the podcast hosts interjected, “You didn’t ask why?”
“No, honestly not,” said Pepi, without ever calling Berhalter by name. “I was in shock, it took me five minutes to get it in my head. I just couldn’t believe it – I called my agent straight away and then I called my dad. They thought I was playing with them.
Ricardo Pepi says he hung up on Gregg Berhalter when told he wasn’t in the World Cup
Berhalter led the USMNT to the Round of 16 of the World Championship, but was eliminated by Holland
“It was something I was honestly shocked about. I take advantage of every situation and every situation like this will always make you hungry.’
Meanwhile, Berhalter, the now unsigned USMNT coach, revealed on Tuesday that he physically abused his now-wife Rosalind back in 1991 by kicking her in the legs in a drunken row.
He also said that someone outside the organization threatened to “take him down”.
Earlier Wednesday, former USMNT midfielder Claudio Reyna and his wife Danielle – the parents of disgraced midfielder Gio Reyna – admitted reporting the incident to US Soccer.
Pepi said he was shocked when Berhalter called him and said he needed time to process
Berhalter’s US soccer contract officially expired at the end of last month after the World Cup
It came after Berhalter also surprisingly awarded Reyna – one of US soccer’s most exciting players – a supporting role on the team. Berhalter later said at a charter leadership briefing that he was close to sending a squad member home from Qatar because of his “extremely” bad behavior.
Berhalter didn’t reveal who the player was but it was later reported that it was Gio Reyna, prompting the 19-year-old to address the speculation on Instagram.
“I’m disappointed that this matter continues to be reported… and very surprised that anyone on the US men’s team would contribute,” Reyna said. ‘Coach Berhalter has always said that problems that arise with the team are kept ‘in house’ so that we can focus on unity and the team’s progress.’
Reyna’s statement appealed to a number of US players, including star midfielder Yunus Musah, Tim Ream, Joe Scally and Pepi himself. Pepi’s quotes will now only appear to further undermine Berhalter’s authority.
Meanwhile, Pepi stayed in Holland and was caught dancing while wearing an Oranje jersey after the United States were knocked out in the round of 16. Addressing the incident on the podcast, Pepi said the shirt was the result of a losing bet he made with a team-mate from Groningen.
Pepi says that seeing him in a Dutch jersey after the USMNT defeat was the result of a losing bet
Pepi said he never got an explanation from Berhalter later because he didn’t want one.
“I didn’t really want to know that, I didn’t want to give myself any excuses,” Pepi explained. “My mentality was that it was time to get to work. It took a day or two to digest and then accepting the fact that I hadn’t made it meant it was time to get to work.
“I’ve seen the games, I have team-mates and some of them are great friends. I support the country so it’s important to see the game.”
Ex-USA captain Claudio Reyna (back left) and his wife Danielle (right) – the parents of Giovanni Reyna (bottom right – age 5) – admitted reporting to US Soccer about Gregg Berhalter’s domestic violence incident
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-11600735/Ricardo-Pepi-HUNG-Gregg-Berhalter-told-USA-World-Cup-team.html?ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490&ito=1490 Ricardo Pepi HUNG UP on Gregg Berhalter when told he is from the US World Cup team