Honduras striker Suazo doubtful for World Cup

SAN PEDRO SULA - Injured Honduras striker David Suazo may not make it to the World Cup, coach Reinaldo Rueda said.

"If I were giving my list today, Suazo would not be on it," Colombian Rueda, to be presented with his Honduran nationality at the team's farewell friendly against Venezuela on Wednesday evening, said.

Suazo, who plays in Italy for Genoa and is normally Rueda's first choice up front, is nursing a muscle injury in his right leg.

"I've spoken with David. He's very motivated and optimistic that he will recover," Rueda told reporters.

"His injury is an adverse factor for us. It's something to be evaluated, one thing is to want and another to be able to," he said on Tuesday night at a national team sponsorship event.

"In football terms, I don't know what we'll do so he recovers his level. That can only be achieved with continuity in his (club) team. Given what's happening with him, it's complicated for him to go.

Rueda, speaking in San Pedro Sula which is his team's de facto home even though the federation is based in the capital Tegucigalpa, said his squad for the finals was virtually settled.

DECISION CLOSE

"I'm making lists and adjustments all the time, possible associations (between players), combinations, alternatives. I think only an emergency situation, an accident, would change things," he said.

"Otherwise, the list of 23 players who are going to the World Cup has already been decided."

Rueda said the big challenge for Honduras was to get past the first round from a tough group that includes Chile, their first opponents, favourites Spain and Switzerland.

"But we have to be aware it's very complicated, very difficult to get past our rivals. They have great records, great international experience, with players who are in good form," he said.

"Chile will be the most difficult because of their closed playing system. The others, due to their characteristics, will allow us to play," Rueda said.

"That's precisely our challenge, to beat the big teams. I think Honduras can be a surprise and we will."

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