Andy Najar Commits to Honduras

Najar didn't flip for the States...

As expected, Andy Najar today made public what people had long expected.

Najar will play for his native Honduras when it comes to international play.

There had been some murmurs that Najar might seriously consider the United States. However with what could be a five year wait for citizenship, Najar, who possesses skill to play in Europe sometime in the next few years, wouldn’t have a large audience outside of DC United for his talents.

Perhaps a moment to consider that many players don’t have that choice, a great perspective from Neil Blackmon of The Yanks Are Coming.

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16 responses to this post.

  1. Sad that we couldn’t have a talent like that in our squad, but I can’t begrudge him his choice.

    Reply

  2. Posted by Jared on 2011/04/05 at 1:00 PM

    We couldn’t find him an American wife David Regis style?

    Reply

  3. Washingtonian did a superb story about Najar. It’s hard not to root for this kid after reading what he’s been through already.

    I wish him nothing but the best.

    http://www.washingtonian.com/articles/sports/18735.html

    Reply

    • Posted by SamT on 2011/04/06 at 2:41 PM

      Thanks for this, Matt. A meaty story. He would’ve been a welcome addition to the US pool, but I don’t begrudge him his choice. (And ironic his grandma back in Honduras was hoping he’d go US.)

      Reply

  4. Posted by dth on 2011/04/05 at 1:32 PM

    While it was always tremendously unlikely that Najar would play for the U.S., it’s nevertheless a huge loss: Najar could help the USMNT right now.

    But still, good luck to Najar–rooting for him. Except when playing the U.S.

    Reply

  5. Posted by Paula on 2011/04/05 at 1:44 PM

    The trash talk on Rossi and Subotic is embarrassing. I’m glad the reaction to Najar’s decision isn’t following suit.

    Might go see HON play at the HDC Gold Cup doubleheader, now …

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    • Posted by Dikranovich on 2011/04/05 at 8:52 PM

      Paula don’t you think it is a little different when Rossi was born in the USA and pledged allegiance to the flag and in the Subotic case, he wants to hedge his bet that’s his choice. The fans will react accordingly. Najar is not Honduran until he plays on an official game anyway, or is his word his bond.

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      • Posted by Berniebernier on 2011/04/06 at 11:00 AM

        100% agree. My guess is that if Najar had picked the US you would have seen a Rossi type of reacation out of Hon.

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      • Posted by Paula on 2011/04/06 at 11:15 AM

        Depends on how one is looking at it, I guess. Taking the cases of, say, Agudelo, Diskerud, Bunbury, Najar, Rossi, Chandler, Jones, and Subotic, you have players who may have made decisions “against” a national identity/side that could have reasonable claim on their soccer skills.

        If I were Norwegian, Diskerud is basically like Rossi — a guy who honed his skills in Norway (and, unlike Rossi, still makes his living there) and yet offers them to a national team more likely to get into a WC than the country of his birth.

        Bunbury gets by on the technicality of having spent most of his time out of Canada, but there’s no denying that the Canadians would have also needed him terribly. (Also, that logic falls apart with Sydney Leroux, a potential player for the USWNT at the World Cup, who did grow up and play soccer in Canada.) Ditto Agudelo and Colombia.

        And yet a lot of the comments about Rossi (and to a lesser extent, Subotic) assert that he is unquestionably a “traitor”. Which is weird to me considering how many so-called traitors the US has now and has had in the past. It’s one thing to be disappointed, but it’s another to make claims on an athlete’s loyalties like they are somehow conscripted soldiers and berate them for making choices that are ultimately personal.

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      • Posted by GeorgeCross on 2011/04/06 at 11:30 AM

        I agree Paula. IMO, some people’s reactions are hypocritcal and unbalanced – OK for non-USA born players to represent the USA, but if a USA born player chooses to represent XYZ then they get called a traitor [but there are people who say 'things' with tongue firmly inserted in cheek]…

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        • Posted by Ryan on 2011/04/06 at 12:50 PM

          While it fits the dictionary definition of “hypocracy”, I think it is better defined as “fandom”.

          If you ask me to look at the Rossi decision from a neutral standpoint, I see him as an Italian kid who was raised in the US making a decision to play for the nation he more closely identifies with. As a US soccer fan, he is a traitor who turned his back on his country and deserves harsh criticism.
          If you ask me to look at the Subotic decision from a neutral standpoint, I see a you kid who (thanks to regional unrest and instability) was essentially nation-less, looking for a national identity to cling to, and ended up doing something that many unsettled young adults do: changed his mind. As a US Soccer fan, he is a back-stabbing bastard who used our system to his advantage only to brush us aside and toss us away.
          If you ask me to look at the Diskerud decision from a neutral standpoint, I see a kid who made a Rossi-like decision, except he had actually played for the nation of his birth before switching. As a US Soccer fan, I’m very happy we added a quality player with great potential.

          Asking fans to make decisions that are 100% objective is missing the point of being a fan.

          Reply

          • Posted by GeorgeCross on 2011/04/06 at 3:31 PM

            I understand that there is bias. But you can be a fan without being *completely* unreasonable. But then again, I am not American and I haven’t seen probably the best US outfield player to turn his back on the USA…

            Reply

            • Posted by dth on 2011/04/06 at 5:00 PM

              Well, you could actually make a case that the *two* best American-eligible players are playing for the other teams. Who wouldn’t want Rossi and Subotic playing for the USMNT?

              That said, I don’t really begrudge them their decision. I’m a laissez-faire kind of a guy.

  6. Posted by FutbolAmerica on 2011/04/05 at 3:43 PM

    I’m sure glad I clicked on the link to Neil Blackmon’s article.

    I imagine a lot of people never see that side of soccer; but having grown up in a small farming community in Oregon I have seen the Sunday soccer matches in the local park of the immigrants on their days off and see so much potential that will never be. It really makes you wonder how many Andy Najar’s are out there that will be never be discovered.

    Reply

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