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Honduras int’l Espinoza returns to Sporting KC

Sporting Kansas City announced on January 6, 2015, that Honduras international Roger Espinoza (white jersey) is returning to the club. (Photo: FIFA via Getty Images)

KANSAS CITY, Kansas -- Honduras international midfielder Roger Espinoza proved Tuesday that you can come home again. 

Two years after leaving the Major League Soccer club for England, the 28-year-old dynamo returned to Sporting Kansas City.

After a series of impressive performances with Honduras at the 2012 Olympic Football Tournament, Espinoza had joined English Premier League side Wigan in January 2013.  Though he helped the Latics to the FA Cup crown, the team was relegated to The Championship that season.

"I love Kansas City.  I wanted to stay here, but I also wanted to try England," Espinoza said at a press conference.  "I had a dream to play in the Premier League.  That dream came true.  I always knew that I would come back to Kansas City.  I'm glad the opportunity came right away.  I'm right back home again."

The 5-foot-11, 170-lb Espinoza has played for Honduras in the 2010 and 2014 FIFA World Cups. 

His most memorable international performance, however was in Honduras' 3-2 loss to eventual silver medalist Brazil in the 2012 Olympic quarterfinals in Newcastle, England.  Espinoza, who played an end-to-end game, set up one goal and scored another.  After he accrued his second yellow card in the waning minutes, Espinoza was given a standing ovation by the St. James' Park spectators for his display.

"If I had never went, I probably would not have been happy with myself," he expressed.

Sporting Kansas City technical director and head coach Peter Vermes said that Espinoza will fit in well with the club.

"The way that he plays, his aggressive mentality, his never give up attitude on the field, all of that is a big piece of who are," he noted.  "He was a major component to that style of play.  With the kind experience that he has, I look at it that he's coming into the best years of his career.  We look at big things from him.  It's not just his play.  It's also that leadership.  We want to become something better than who we are.  I always talk about the evolution and I think he's the next phase of where this evolution is going." 

Espinoza said that Kansas City would be the last stop in his pro career.

"Yeah, definitely," he finished.  "I never played with another club in MLS, since I got to Kansas City.  This is the only place I've known, the place that drafted me, I think the only team that wanted to draft me.  I am happy to be here.  This is where I want to be.”

 
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