Rapids sign World Cup and EPL veteran Hendry Thomas
COMMERCE CITY, Colo. (Tuesday, August 21, 2012) – The Colorado Rapids announced on Tuesday the signing of midfielder Hendry Thomas, who comes to the club after three seasons in the English Premier League with Wigan Athletic. Thomas, who played for Honduras at the 2010 World Cup and 2008 Olympics, arrived in Colorado this weekend and will be eligible pending receipt of his P-1 work visa and International Transfer Certificate.
Thomas will train with the Rapids this morning at 9:30 on Field 19 at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, with media access following the practice.
“Hendry Thomas is a player with a vast amount of experience for somebody just 27 years old,” said Rapids Technical Director Paul Bravo. “He’s been playing at the highest level and in the biggest international tournaments for his country, and will be a great addition to our squad.”
“Adding Hendry to our group gives us an important player on the field who brings a lot of experience,” said Rapids Head Coach Oscar Pareja. “He’s a powerful midfielder who can break up attacks and can help solidify the center of the field for us. We are very excited to have him here.”
Thomas, a native of La Ceiba, Honduras, joins the Rapids after three seasons in the English Premier League with Wigan Athletic, where he played under manager Roberto Martinez. He played 49 Premier League matches, and made several appearances in FA Cup and Carling Cup action. Thomas was signed by Wigan in 2009, though the team had originally tried to sign the midfielder a year earlier under previous manager Steve Bruce but was unable to acquire a work permit for the player.
With the Honduran National Team, Thomas has been a fixture at marquee tournaments, playing in two matches at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa and captaining Honduras as one of three over-age players at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing. He was in the Honduran squad for the last four CONCACAF Gold Cups, the biennial championship tournament for North America, Central America and the Caribbean.
Thomas began his career with Club Deportivo Olimpia of Tegucigalpa, Honduras, making his debut in 2001 as a 16-year-old after coming through the club’s youth system. In his eight years and 16 tournaments with Olimpia (the Honduran league has two seasons per calendar year), Thomas won seven championships, helping maintain the club’s domestic dominance. On September 30, 2007, Thomas scored Olimpia’s 2000th league goal of all time.
The Rapids visit the San Jose Earthquakes and Portland Timbers before returning to Dick’s Sporting Goods Park to face the Timbers again on Wednesday, September 5 at 7:00 p.m. MT. The Lads’ Night Out deal is available for the match, giving fans two tickets, two drinks, two hot dogs and two scarves for just $44. For more information, or to purchase tickets, call 303-825-GOAL or visit www.ColoradoRapids.com.
Full Name: Hendry Bernardo Thomas Suazo
Born: February 23, 1985
Hometown: La Ceiba, Honduras
Weight: 175 lbs
Previous Club: Wigan Athletic (ENG)
Transaction: Signed as an International Player by the Colorado Rapids on Tuesday, August 21, 2012