Ruiz looks forward to Guatemala U20 challenge

 Carlos Alberto Ruiz (pictured) was named head coach of the Guatemala under-20 national team on October 3, 2014.


GUATEMALA CITY, Guatemala – On Friday, Carlos Alberto Ruiz was named head coach of the Guatemala under-20 national team. 

Three days later, he was putting the squad through its paces at a mini-camp.

"It's a big responsibility, first by directing the selection," Ruiz told in an exclusive interview.  "It's one of the biggest challenges in my career.  It's a nice challenge.”

The 47-year-old Argentine replaced Guillermo Morales, who guided the side to a spot in the 2015 CONCACAF Under-20 Championship.

That competition will be played January in Jamaica, giving Ruiz a short period of time to introduce his philosophy and system of play.

“It is a question of being practical and being clear in the ideas that one wants to give to the boys,” said Ruiz, a former coach at Municipal, Comunicaciones and Petapa.  "Giving continuity to the work of Guillermo (Morales, his predecessor) so as not to confuse the players.  We must not invent.  The success of a coach is to be clear.  I will be responsible.  The idea is to keep watching players. At specific points, I will incorporate players.  I’m going to intensify the work.”

Guatemala qualified for the CONCACAF competition thanks to a fourth-place finish in Central American qualifying, nipping Costa Rica for the region’s last berth on the head-to-head tiebreaker.  The Chapines will be among 12 teams vying for one of four tickets to the 2015 FIFA U-20 World Cup in New Zealand.

"The direct objective is obviously to qualify for the finals," concluded Ruiz.