Honduran international on joining Latics, learning English and a trip to Paris
Juan Carlos Garcia is hoping to follow in the footsteps of a number of his international colleagues and help bring success to Wigan Athletic, after the defender joined his team-mates for the first time this week.
The 25-year-old became Owen Coyle’s eighth signing of the summer transfer window last week, and the fifth Honduran to join the club, joining fellow compatriot Roger Espinoza in the dressing room after finalising his work permit in Paris yesterday (Wednesday).
Speaking exclusively to the official website, Garcia told us how delighted he was to bring to an end a long week, and focus now on making an impact in the team:
“This is a fantastic opportunity for me,” he said.“For Honduran players to get the chance to come to Europe is something we all dream about because these are the best leagues in the world, and it’s a chance to test yourself against the best players. I’m really excited to be able to sign for Wigan Athletic, a club that is well known in our country of course.
“I know all the boys who have been at here before having played with them for the international team and every one of them says what a great place to be it is.
“I know Maynor (Figueroa) was a big hero here, and also Wilson (Palacios). Hendry (Thomas) did not play so many games but he always speaks really well of the people here. Roger signed only in January but he has had a good time here. They say everyone is part of a big family.
“I have been following the club since the Honduran players have been there so it is exciting for me to be joining them now. It was a shame the club were relegated but I think everyone now focused no on getting promotion back up to the Premier League.
“Winning the FA Cup was something incredible and it was a game that was watched all over the world. I was very proud that my friend Roger Espinoza was in the team and showed his national pride by waving the Honduran flag with the cup.”
The move was finalised after a busy week in France with club officials obtaining the player’s work permit, and Garcia admitted that whilst the wait was agonising he is now looking forward to settling in at his new club and hoping to break down a few language barriers whilst he’s at it:
“I did not have a visa to enter the UK so I had to go to Paris to the British Consulate with someone from the club and it is a very nervous time because there is much paperwork and waiting around to do.
“I am just delighted everything is now clear for me to start here. I have enjoyed my first training session, and all the players have been great with me. There are a few Spanish speakers here already, but I know I need to learn English really quickly. I speak a little bit but I need to take lessons fast, so hopefully the players will talk a little slowly for me!”
Finally, the former Olimpia man thanked the Manager for giving him the opportunity of playing for Wigan Athletic and can’t wait to pull on the shirt and play in front of the Latics fans:
“I just want to thank him (Owen Coyle) for giving me this chance. I have been doing research about him and can see he likes to play attacking football.
“I am also told this is a club where the fans like the players to try their best and work hard, and that is what they will always get from me. I want to say to the fans that I hope they see what I can do and that I get the chance to prove that I am good enough to be successful here.”