Bengtson bags Honduras call-up

TEGUCIGALPA - Striker Jerry Bengtson, the top scorer in the Honduran first division, could win his first cap in next week's World Cup warmup home match against Venezuela, coach Reinaldo Rueda said on Wednesday.

"With Jerry we worked during two call-up sessions before the Gold Cup last year and now he has done well enough to maybe play his first international match against Venezuela," Rueda said.

Colombian Rueda has included Bengtson in a 19-man squad of home-based players to begin World Cup preparations with the friendly in San Pedro Sula next Wednesday.

The match is Honduras's last before they leave for Germany on May 15 for a training camp prior to travelling to South Africa for the finals starting on June 11.

Bengtson, 23, plays for first division side Vida and is the Clausura championship's leading scorer with 11 goals.

Rueda revealed during a news conference that he had been surprised by a phone call earlier on Wednesday telling him he had won a trip to the finals from a mobile phone company.

"I was really surprised by the call but it's my (teenage) son Juan who's been sending messages (to the mobile company), he won it," Rueda said.

"It's a blessing from God," added Rueda of the prize that includes Honduras's Group H matches against Spain, Switzerland and Chile.

Honduran football federation spokesman Edwin Banegas said: "(Rueda) has said he wants to take his family to the World Cup and with this ticket he can at least take his son."

Squad:

Goalkeepers: Noel Valladares (Olimpia), Ricardo Canales (Motagua), Donis Escober (Olimpia)

Defenders: Johnny Palacios (Olimpia), Osman Chavez (Platense), Emilio Izaguirre (Motagua), Johnny Leveron (Motagua), Sergio Mendoza (Motagua), Erick Norales (Marathon), Boniek Garcia (Olimpia)

Midfielders: Mariano Acevedo (Marathon), Amado Guevara (Motagua), Ramon Nunez (Olimpia), Danilo Turcios (Olimpia)

Forwards: Walter Martinez (Marathon), Melvin Valladares (Real Espana), Carlos Pavon (Real Espana), Georgie Welcome (Motagua), Jerry Bengtson (Vida)

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