Honduras head coach Hernan Medford shouts out instruction during the Central American Cup's fifth-place match against Nicaragua on September 13, 2014, in Los Angeles. (Photo: Mexsport)
LOS ANGELES – On Saturday, Honduras managed to secure a playoff spot against a team from the Caribbean for a place in the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup, after narrowly defeating Nicaragua 1-0 in the Copa Centroamericana TIGO USA 2014 match for fifth place at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.
In a bid to make a 13th Gold Cup appearance, the Catrachos will meet the fifth-place team from November’s Caribbean Cup finals on yet-to-be-determined dates.
Honduras head coach Hernan Medford said that his players could not fight against the anxiety of wanting to improve their offensive output. In four tournament outings, the three-time CCA champion scored only three goals. Two were as a result of own-goals in a 2-0 win over Belize in the tournament opener.
"Honduras is a team whose game has offensive volume,” commented Medford. “There are technical reports and statistics, but we were not effective from the first game to the last."
Resigned to the fact that his team failed to qualify directly to next year’s Gold Cup, Medford would like to see his players’ capacity at this level of football expand.
"We achieved half of the objective,” the 46-year-old continued. “We wished to do so directly, but you cannot expect miracles in such a short working time. This group of players has no international experience. The Central American Cup competition has grown. The days of easily beating Nicaragua and Belize are over.”
Meford did not want his words to be taken as an excuse, but since being named to the position in late July, he’s had limited time with the squad.
"Honduras had only two full workouts with 21 players twice in a month,” noted the Costa Rican. “However, many do not understand this and want results overnight.
"Generational change has costs. When I gave the first call-up, many people rejoiced in Honduras. Journalists praised the decision. Now that the results were not there in this competition, they demanding the return of veteran players.”
Medford and Honduras will next prepare for away friendlies next month against a pair of CONCACAF powerhouses, facing Mexico on October 9 in Tuxtla Gutierrez and the United States on October 14 in Boca Raton, Florida.