WORLD CUP PREVIEW: Honduras

WORLD CUP PREVIEW: Honduras

COACH – Luis Fernando Suarez
BEST SHOWING – Group Stage 1982, 2010
QUALIFICATION – 3rd in CONCACAF
TOURNAMENT ODDS – 4000/1 (BetVictor, Ladbrokes)
FIXTURES
June 15th – France (2000 BST, Porto Alegre, BBC)
June 20th – Ecuador (2300 BST, Curitiba, ITV)
June 25th – Switzerland (2100 BST, Manaus, BBC)

Button France Button Switzerland Button Ecuador

 

Honduras come into the World Cup determined to finally win their first game, with a 1-1 draw against Spain in 1982 being the height of their achievements to date.

Honduras did adopt a positive approach to their friendly with Brazil but paid the price as they were trounced 5-0 being countered often. However progress was made in qualification – a gritty fightback from 2-0 down to draw with Mexico late on and a famous win in the Central American country gives them hope, as did a 2-1 win over the regional powerhouse the United States.

Suarez likes to keep it simple and plays a disciplined 4-4-2. The Hondurans are a spirited group but lack true star quality. The 37-year-old Noel Valladares should play in goal.

The defence is their strength with Arnold Peralta, Victor Bernandez, Emilio Izaguirre and Maynor Figueroa making up that unit. Wilson Palacios shores things up in midfield while Roger Espinoza could play alongside him. Oscar Garcia and youngster Andy Najar could play on the wings.

With the retirement of David Suazo and Carlos Pavon, the Hondurans have looked to Carlo Costly and Jerry Bengtson for their goals. They netted 16 between them in qualifying but will have to step it up to give the Hondurans hope.

 

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ONE TO WATCH

05 WORLD CUP BengstonJerry Bengtson has hardly been a regular for his MLS side in the last season and a half but for his country he’s formed a decent partnership with Carlo Costly.

Bengtson can play as an all around striker, being able to link up play and bring other forwards and midfielders into the fray. He can find the net too and is capable of providing the odd moment of magic.

Three time winner of the Honduran Golden Boot, Bengtson is looking to step up to fill the goalscoring gap left by David Suazo.

HERE COMES D-JUDGE
D-Judge

Honduras will have the good will of neutrals and Suarez has set the ambitious target of beating France. But it’s hard to see where they can win a game.

If Suarez has learnt the lessons of the Brazilian defeat, a bit of success can be had. Izaguirre can maraud down the flanks and cause problems and he’s worked hard on the defensive side of his game.

Palacios is solid but Najar and Garcia need to create opportunities for Costly and Bengtson. Suarez acknowledges that if both teams are prepared the better players should win – but if Honduras are taken lightly they can take advantage of disorder.

Like Costa Rica in Group D, Honduras could end up having a role in the group’s outcome and getting that result which is fatal to another team and their hopes.

 

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VERDICT

First round casualties.

world cup Brasil emblem 01

Dan-ilo Turcios (D-Good)
Owls Alive
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TWITTER: @OwlsAlive or @DGood83


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