GUADALAJARA, Mexico – Right after bursting onto the scene in Honduras with CD Victoria, Orange County, Calif., native Kevin Hoyos spoke in the local press about the possibility of a move to MLS and that there was interest from an unidentified club.
Now with just weeks to go before his loan deal from storied Argentine club Estudiantes de La Plata expires, the 20-year-old admits that he is unsure of the next step in his career with no concrete offer from north of the border.
“I’m concentrating on winning the league here, doing the best I can for me and the team and going back to Estudiantes in December to see if they are going to use me on the team,” Hoyos told MLSsoccer.com by phone. “If not, I’ve got to find a club or see if I have an offer at the end of the year.”
Hoyos left his native Southern California for Argentina with his family at age 13, but the roots to where he spent his early childhood seemingly remain strong. The striker was busy watching a replay of last weekend's Seattle Sounders vs. LA Galaxy match when MLSsoccer.com called him on Tuesday at his new home in La Ceiba, Honduras.
Hoyos has made an impression on the Central American league with his seven goals so far, putting him in with a shot of the Honduran first-division scoring title, despite him not featuring for the early part of the season.
The strong, athletic forward, who likes to run at defenders, decided almost on the spot to join Victoria when the opportunity presented itself in early September, with chances in Estudiantes’ first team limited.
But the player would jump at the chance to move home if the opportunity came up.
“I’m confident that I could play there [in MLS] and it’d be kind of crazy,” stated Hoyos, who is yet to play youth international soccer. “It’d be good to go over there to show what I can do.“
Hoyos maintains a desire to represent the United States, but he does believe his career has benefitted from growing up within the hard, ultra-competitive environs of an Argentine youth set-up, saying he is “smarter” on the field than he possibly would’ve been if he’d have remained in the US.
Surprisingly, Hoyos didn’t have problems adapting from playing in the United States to joining for Estudiantes, although he did undergo a full one-year trial at the club when he first arrived in Argentina.
“I thought it would be hard for me to adapt, but I guess if you’re a good soccer player you can play anywhere and adapt to any place,” explained Hoyos.
The move to Honduras split Kevin from his older brother Michael (pictured at right), who joined Greece Superleague outfit OFI on loan from Estudiantes until next summer.
The two brothers, who lived in the same apartment provided by Estudiantes in Argentina, keep in regular contact despite the time-zone difference between Honduras and Greece. And Kevin is backing his older sibling, who featured regularly for Argentine youth national team sides, to succeed despite problems getting minutes in Europe at present.
“He’s a really good player, not just because he’s my brother,” said Hoyos. “We’re best friends.”
Tom Marshall covers Americans playing in Latin America for MLSsoccer.com. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.