Najar to discuss national team decision Tuesday


Photo by Jose L. Argueta/ISIphotos.com

Andy Najar will apparently end the mystery Tuesday afternoon.

D.C. United has scheduled a press conference for 2:30 p.m. on Tuesday during which Najar will discuss his national team future and presumably pick which country he will represent, either his native Honduras or the United States.

Najar, 18, burst onto the scene as an unheralded rookie when he signed with D.C. United as a Homegrown Player and started the first game of the 2010 season. The speedy winger created havoc on opposing defenses and was a very bright spot in an otherwise dismal campaign for D.C. last year, earning MLS Rookie of the Year honors. His national-team choice has been a point of contention for some time.

Should Najar choose Hondruas, he could go directly into the senior squad for this summer's CONCACAF Gold Cup (or the U-20 team for the World Cup should Honduras qualify). Should he chose the United States, he would have to wait out the citizenship process before playing for the U.S. national team.

Where do you think Najar will take his talents, USA or Honduras?

Share your thoughts below.

  • Micah King

    Please read my post again. I did not say he didn’t grew up in USA -___-. I said he did not grow up through the US soccer system. Basically, I am saying he did not start and grow up through the MLS soccer system and ranks. He grew up in the European soccer system and ranks.


  • emmanuel

    they might cut corners for him though…

    DC united is talking to the congressman in hurrying up the process for his ‘papeles’


  • Brian

    1) What difference does it make? Najar lives in the US and has lived here since age 13, and he plays his club soccer here. Of course he’s going to announce his decision here. He’s in the middle of his club season.

    Also you may want to rework your logic there. Najar announcing his decision to play for Honduras on US soil, is NOT the same if Bunbury had announced his decision to play for the US on Canadian soil. If Najar announced his decision to play for the US on Honduras soil, that would be like if Bunbury announced his decision to play for the US on Canadian soul.

    2) I don’t necessarily agree. Yes, playing for the US is probably seen as more prestigious and more difficult than playing for Honduras because:
    A) We have better players.
    B) We have more players playing in England and the rest of Europe.
    C) We play games against higher quality opponents in friendlies.
    D) We’ve been to more World Cups.
    E) We’ve performed better in World Cups.
    F) We’ve gone to Confederations Cups.
    G) We’ve won more Gold Cups (Honduras has 1 CONCACAF Champions title in 1981).

    But it sounds like Najar still needs to wait 2-3 years to get his US citizenship, if he waits to play for the US, he definitely misses out on the 2011 Gold Cup, the 2011 U20 World Cup, World Cup Qualifying in 2012, and would probably miss out on the early part of 2013 World Cup qualifying as well as the 2013 Gold Cup.

    If he chooses Honduras now he would definitely make the 2011 Honduras Gold Cup roster and get significant playing time (maybe even be a starter) and/or play for Honduras in the 2011 U20 World Cup (that is, if Honduras makes it, all they have to do is beat Panama in the Quarterfinals), as well as World Cup Qualifying in 2012 & 2013, and the 2013 Gold Cup.

    So if he waits to play for the US, he might get his citizenship in time to play for the later part of the 2013 World Cup Qualifiers (the part of the Hex that takes place after the 2013 Gold Cup) but maybe not. If his wait time is closer to 3 years, than 2 years, then he’s miss out on on all of the 2014 World Cup Qualifying matches, and his only chance of making the 2014 World Cup with the US team would be based on his MLS play (that is if a team doesn’t buy him from MLS before then, not as likely if he doesn’t play internationally at all before then) and the few friendlies before the World Cup in 2014.

    Of course Honduras’s chances of making the 2014 World Cup are not as great at the U.S’s chances, but he’d at least be involved in qualifying with Honduras. This kid might not end up being USMNT quality or he might be borderline USMNT quality and he won’t have a whole lot of time to impress Bob to make the 23 man roster for the 2014 World Cup.

    Also, he signed a multi-year contract with DC United and MLS in Dec 2010. I’m assuming this a standard 4 year MLS contract, so he has 3 more seasons after this one. Which means, assuming I am correct about my previous assumption, that he could leave on a free transfer after the 2014 MLS season. If he doesn’t make the 2014 World Cup with the US, then he might not get as many European club offers, compared to the amount of Euro club offers he would get (2014 World Cup with Honduras, or not) if he had gone through 2 Gold Cups and World Cup Qualifying with Honduras.

    Plus, his chances of getting a UK work permit would be higher with Honduras because he have more matches with them, than he would if he waited for the U.S.


  • Brian

    Feilhaber has definitely been tried more than a few times. He has 38 caps. He played in the 2007 Gold Cup and the 2009 Confederations Cup, and he was THE super sub for the US in the 2014 World Cup. He played against Slovenia and Algeria, as well as the entire 2nd half against Ghana.

    I’m not gonna get into the other other guys (Torres, Gomez, Adu, Castillo) because they all need to either get more playing time with their clubs and/or need to play better for their clubs.


  • Brian

    He signed a new multi-year (probably 4 year) contract in Dec. 2010 which replaced his homegrown contract.


  • KevDC

    “Plus, his chances of getting a UK work permit would be higher with Honduras because he have more matches with them, than he would if he waited for the U.S.”

    Ah, very good point. I hadn’t thought of that. Get a bunch of caps in the next couple years and he’s over the UK work permit hurdle (if he aspires to play in the EPL). He couldn’t get that with the U.S. because he’s likely at least a couple years away from citizenship.


  • WildOne

    Why would DC United hold a press conference to announce he’s playing for Honduras?

    He’s going to be a Yank.


  • Brian

    Yeah for a non-EU player to qualify for a UK work permit he must have played for his country in at least 75% of its competitive ‘A’ team matches for which he was available for selection during the previous two years, and his country must have averaged at least 70th place in the official FIFA world rankings over the previous two years.

    Honduras is currently ranked 38th, so he’s good in that department.

    So yeah again if he waits for the US, and doesn’t get his US citizenship until after the 2013 Gold Cup and 2014 World Cup Qualifying (that takes place in 2013), then the only official games with the US he’d be able to get before his contract is up after the 2014 MLS season, is the 2014 World Cup. And that’s a total toss up right now. That also pretty much eliminates (if he lights up MLS, he might be able to be considered a “special talent”) an EPL team from buying him from MLS before his MLS contract is up.


  • Reece

    This country is what made him what he is today. We are a country of immigrants, he should embrace that.


  • Brian

    It’s not a slam dunk like you think it. First of all he’s in the middle of a club season with DC United, so where else is he going to announce it? And I think a club team should support its players no matter what.

    Unless Najar’s citizenship process has been expedited (highly doubt it), then why would he be announce he’s playing for a country that he’s not yet a citizen of?


  • abc



  • Paul

    Look at it from his point of view. The US has given him the chance, he took it. Throw on the stripe and kick some @ss.


  • Hush

    Andy deja de joder y escoje los UNITED!lol

    Let’s see here, Andy could play for a top 20 team in the world, or take a step back and play for an Honduras team that could possibly make a good run in the future. I strongly believe that if he chooses Honduras he is taking two steps back in his career. Let’s face it, the kid is going to get married with a N.American girl, have American babies, and retire somewhere in Florida. Also, if he is looking to further his career in Europe the States would be the place to be. BB won’t be the USMNT coach for ever.

    Andy juga con los “UNITED” y deja de fregar vos!:)


  • Felix

    If he picks Honduras, he’s probably an ingrained starter or on the bench (as a impact sub) right off the bat. But I don’t know if Honduras can qualify for another World Cup, some of their better players are getting older, guys like Suazo, Costly, Guevara, etc.

    If he picks the US, he’s behind Dempsey and Chandler for the right midfield spot. But he’s playing in World Cups (presumably if he makes the squad). And he has to wait for his citizenship.

    I’d love to have him on the US, but the decision if he wants to play immediately (as in the Gold Cup, or U-20s) is for Honduras.

    If he’s announcing now, my guess is he’s picking Honduras.


  • Mr Turd Meuller

    Not a fan of having this press conference in Washington if he’s going to announce his intentions to play for another country. Have the Honduras federation fly to their capital and have the press counference there. Definitely not a fan of this…


  • MesaATLien

    What makes you think that he’s picking the U.S. for more money and exposure. Obviously that’s a bonus, but I would believe he would pick the U.S. for sentimental reasons (gratefulness for the opportunities he’s been given; his own grandmother even wants him to play for the States).


  • Travis

    He’s picked Honduras, not really a surprise to anyone who has followed the situation. Good luck to him


  • r.benjamin

    I had hoped that after a year on the same roster as Kitchen and Davies.. that he’d be swayed to head to a USMNT camp this January. Guess not.


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