El Salvador relying on youth for revival

The El Salvador national team (blue jersey) stands at attention for the national anthem prior to its Central American Cup match against Guatemala on September 3, 2014, in Washington, D.C. (Photo: Mexsport)

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- El Salvador’s winless streak against Guatemala in the Central American Cup (CCA) was extended to 10 games on Wednesday with a 2-1 loss in the 2014 opener for each at Robert F Kennedy Memorial Stadium. 

Head coach Albert Roca congratulated Guatemala on its victory, while accepting that the inexperience of his players was key to the Cuscatlecos’ failing to win for the seventh time in their last eight CCA outings. 

"They (Guatemala) damaged us  in the first half, using two midfield points, which forced us to change the entire system,” said Roca.  “In the second half, we improved and could have scored the goal that would have given us the tie. 

Despite the setback, the 51-year-old Spaniard believed the encounter provided more positives than negatives.

"I'm happy,” expressed Roca.  “Many players were debuted.  We manufactured scoring opportunities.  We pressed on the counter.  And the only thing could be called unsavory in any way was the lack of handling situations in the match by the youngsters and that is going to be achieved successfully over the course of more matches." 

El Salvador will look to bounce back against Honduras on Sunday at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas.  The Salvadorans have beaten their regional rival only once in 11 all-time CCA meetings, 1-0 on February 15, 2003, thanks to a late Gilberto Murgas goal.