Luis Garrido (white jersey) helped Honduras to the 2017 Copa Centroamericana crown after being more than a year away from the national team with a severe knee injury. (Photo: Imagenes en Costa Rica)
PANAMA CITY, Panama – Perhaps there was no one happier about Honduras capturing the 2017 Copa Centroamericana title conquest than Luis Garrido.
It was just 14 months ago that the 26-year-old midfielder suffered a serious injury playing for the Catrachos in a CONCACAF qualifier for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, a 2-0 loss to visiting Mexico. He ruptured PCL and ACL ligaments in his right knee and was away from action until August 10, 2016, returning with Olimpia as 72nd minute substitute in a 1-0 win over Real Espana.
Garrido’s comeback, however, came full circle when he appeared in three of five games during Honduras’ run to a fourth Copa crown.
Jubilation etched on his face throughout the trophy celebration, the former Houston Dynamo player expressed his satisfaction with the achievement.
“Thanks to God, it was earned, nobody gifted us anything,” said Garrido. “All of the matches were finals and now we leave for home happy with the championship,
The Hondurans completed the tournament unbeaten with a 4W-1D-0L record, matching the feats of their countrymen who also didn’t lose during other title runs in 1993, 1995 and 2011.
Garrido noted that avoiding defeat was one of head coach Jorge Luis Pinto’s objectives.
“It was important not to lose. We were clear about that,” he finished. “Coach Pinto made us understand that and, in the end, it was not easy. The truth is that each sacrifice has its reward and here we are as champions.”