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Honduras’ Garcia cautious of Canadian threat
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Honduras Oscar Boniek Garcia (white jersey 14) tries to hold off Canada's Karl Ouimette during a World Cup qualifier on November 13, 2015, in Vancouver, Canada. (Photo: Canada Soccer via Andrew Soong)

SAN PEDRO SULA, Honduras – Honduras’ Oscar Boniek Garcia is wary of the threat that visiting Canada poses ahead of their fourth-round CONCACAF qualifier for the 2018 FIFA World Cup on Friday at the Estadio Olimpico Metropolitano.

The Houston Dynamo midfielder highlighted the Canadians’ attacking capabilities, led Orlando City’s Cycle Larin, who is tied for fifth on the MLS scoring chart with 13 goals, and former English Premier League player – but currently searching for a club -- Junior Hoilett.

“Their attack is explosive,” said Garcia. “That is the case with Larin and the left winger that plays in England (Hoilett).”

Containing Canada’s offense is just one of Honduras’ concerns, especially since only goal difference separates them in the Group A standings. Mexico (4W-0D-0L, 12 points) has already locked up first place, but the second-place Hondurans (1-1-2, 4) lead Canada (1-1-2, 4) only on goal difference (-1 to -4).

“We know the importance of the match, it’s vital for us,” remarked Garcia, who has played in all four of Honduras’ qualifiers, scoring one goal in a 2-0 win over El Salvador. “What we talk about among ourselves is to win no matter what. We have everything in our favor…the weather, the fans. Their (the fans’) heat will be important and, obviously, what we are working on is to pressure them from the beginning.”

The former Olimpia star acknowledged that there will be some tense feelings in the Honduran camp come Friday, but that the fans’ support would play a major role in securing three points.

“There are always nerves and anxiety before a match, but there is a confidence in the team and coaching staff,” Garcia finished. “Our spirits are in top shape and we know that we are going to get a result no matter what. We are trusting in God that we will have chances…that the fans support us during the [90] minutes because we need their backing.”

After facing Canada, Honduras will visit Mexico on September 6.

 
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