Entrevista con Luis Fernando Suarez
Luis Fernando Suarez, head coach of the Honduran national team, visited Dynamo practice on Tuesday to check-in on one of his most important players – midfielder Boniek Garcia. Below is an English transcript of our interview with the man who has Honduras poised for a second straight World Cup bid in 2014.
Question: Tell us about your visit to the U.S. – what brings you to Houston?
Answer: This is the end of a long trip. I’ve been to England watching players – specifically at Wigan - and then Scotland to see a Honduran player there. Now I’m in the U.S. seeing the Honduran players in MLS.
The visit is to basically to talk with the coaches about working together so the teams are getting the most out of the players and we also get them when necessary. Also, to talk about the immediate future – World Cup qualifying matches in June which are key for us, then Gold Cup games. We want to work together so there are no problems between the clubs and the [Honduran Federation].
Question: The influence of Honduran player in MLS has grown in recent years – have you noticed any impact of this on your team?
Answer: Yes and it has been very positive. Recently – especially at the end of last year – MLS-based players have helped us a lot. At the end of the last qualifying round, MLS players were also very important – same at the beginning of this year. Even during the UNCAF tournament (Central American championship) we used players from the Honduran domestic league and MLS.
Question: Tell us a little about Boniek Garcia – he is one of Houston’s stars and obviously a big part of your team as well.
Answer: For me he has been very important. I don’t know if I have ever not called him in for a game. If there is a game he’s missed it is because I was trying to rest him. He has been a critical for the national team. For my taste he is one of the players I enjoy the most – he has great skills, great tactical understanding and as a person he is very good and influential within the team. His work with the national team has been very important.
Question: Another Honduran player with MLS ties is Andy Najar, who was sold to Anderlecht over the winter. How have you seen his progress since moving to Belgium?
Answer: He has progressed quite a bit. He is scoring a lot of goals with the [Anderlecht] reserve team. Andy is a young man with a huge future. Since we’ve had him - and in the Olympics and Olympic qualifying tournament - he has done some very important things. We believe in him - that he will have a big role for the national team in the future. For games that are coming up, having young guys who can step in if the veterans aren’t there is very good news. Andy is just that.
Question: We’ve seen Andy play both outside midfield and right back for D.C. United. Now he is playing as a forward with Anderlecht’s reserves. What do you see as his best position?
Answer: He certainly has the talent to be versatile. But I like him as a wide midfielder. He has the required skill set for that position – he has speed, 1-on-1 ability and can cross the ball well from the wings - so that’s the position I think is best for him. But there is the possibility he could play as defender - and that’s a great asset - or as a forward. But I like him most out wide in midfield.