Season preview: Motagua New Orleans

MOTJRS

 

Two time Louisiana Premier League champions, Motagua New Orleans, has been steadily making a name for themselves over the last few years and making history while doing so. In early 2016 they became the first amateur team from Louisiana to qualify for the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup in it’s modern format. Ultimately falling short to the Mississippi Brilla of the PDL in the first round, 2-0. 

Team Overview: Motagua enters the inaugural GCPL season with a plethora of seasoned players. Captain, Leo Ferreira de Barros, will once again lead the Blue Eagles after sharing the LPL golden boot title last season scoring 6 goals. Rejoining Barros in the midfield will be veterans Fernando Vargas, Caio Cruz, Steven Morris, Brandon Chagnard and Carlos Ramos. On the defensive side Stuart Hayers, PJ Lynch, John Hamide, Scott Burris and Hendry Cordova return and look to keep the sheets clean for the mighty Blue Eagles. Veteran keeper, Donaldo Morales, is rumored to return to New Orleans and start between the sticks for Motagua, with Lamoy Graham and newcomer Connor Jones relieving the Honduran international.

Since 2010 the core group of Motagua has played side by side, building chemistry that has undoubtedly given them the edge over their oppoenents through the years. During their two seasons in the LPL Motagua’s overall record was 14-2-2, with an impressive 8-1-0 home record, leading them to two titles.  On paper Motagua looks to be set for another shot at the title and one could argue they are the favorites heading into the season.

However the question could be raised if the core group of Motagua are on the decline of their prime. The average age of their predicted starting XI is 31 years, and for a team who has set the bar for teams in Louisiana to reach, they came across a few close calls games towards the end of their 2015-2016 season that could have seen the Blue Eagles trophy-less.

Coming back from the land of “what ifs” now, Motagua did grind out their final push of the season to lift the trophy and they did just win their 4th straight local league title. Arguably the most seasoned team in the league Motagua should, and more than likely will, be in the mix come March 2017.

One to watch: Reece Wilson, Forward

The 27 year old English attacker joined Motagua New Orleans in the fall of 2014 after spending three seasons with the New Orleans Jesters. A former professional player at Universidad de Costa Rica, Reece has given the Blue Eagles a much needed lift in their attack and has been an integral part in their recent success. During his two seasons in the Louisiana Premier League he bagged 15 goals and assisted 10.

Where will Motagua finish in the league table?

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