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Football is the unofficial national sport of Hondurasmarker.

The Federación Nacional Autónoma de Fútbol de Honduras

The Federación Nacional Autónoma de Fútbol de Honduras (FENAFUTH) is the governing body of football in Honduras. The FENAFUTH was founded in 1951 and joined FIFAmarker in the same year. Ten years later it joined CONCACAF.

League system

The Liga Nacional de Futbol

The Liga Nacional de Fútbol de Honduras is the highest league in Honduran football and has 10 member clubs, the next two leagues are Liga de Ascenso de Honduras and Liga Mayor de Futbol de Honduras. Winning the Liga Nacional is considered the greatest honour in Honduran football and guarantees qualification for the CONCACAF Champions League, the Central American club competition.

The National League was founded in 1965 which was modeled with the Mexican league in 1962 and 1963.

Defunct National competitions

Some defunct National competitions include:

Qualification for American competitions

Clubs who win the Liga Nacional de Fútbol de Honduras can qualify to compete in the CONCACAF competitions in the following season. Currently, Honduras is awarded the following places in North American competitions:

Competition Who Qualifies Notes
CONCACAF Champions League National Champion and Runners-up Club that won opening tournament and club the won closing tournament. In the case if the same club wins both tournaments the club with the highest points accumulated with the two tournaments is declared runner-up.

The Honduras national team

The Honduras national football team played in the very first international football match at Guatemala Citymarker, against Guatemala in 1921. Their greatest triumph to date was qualifying to the World Cup in 1982and qualifying to the FIFA World Cup in 2010

Stadiums of Honduran Football

History of Honduran football

Arrival of Football in Honduras

There are many theories on how football started practice in Honduras. In the Atlantic Cost, caused by the increasing exportation of bananas in the cities of La Ceibamarker and Telamarker in that time they were the most important ports of the country.

Julio Luis Ustariz, a son of French immigrants wrote some memories that some merchants gave him a soccer ball in 1896 as a gift in Puerto Cortesmarker. Since then soccer had been in practice in Honduras.

But until 1906 an official document by the republic's government hired a Guatemalanmarker professor named Miguel Saravia to teach soccer at the Escuela Normal de Varones in Tegucigalpamarker. In 1909, three years after the arrival of the professor Saravia; the Spanishmarker monk Niglia made soccer appear at the Instituto Salesiano San Miguel in Comayaguamarker.

Football became popular, especially in higher classes, although it couldn't compete against baseball which at the time was the most popular sport until 1917. The team known as Juventud Olimpica founded in 1912 became Club Deportivo Olimpia.

Like Olimpia other clubs were founded in Tegucigalpa, like the teams Lituania, Signos, Trebol, Honduras, Atletico Deportes, La Nueva Era, Colon and Spring, all of which don't exist now.

It was until 1925 which football became to gain strength in the second most important city, San Pedro Sulamarker with the foundation of Club Deportivo Marathón. For some historians of that era, before Marathon (was named after a rugby ball) there was a club named Club Patria but with very small amount of duracion, the president of the Republic, Dr. Miguel Paz Barahona named the sporting fields Patria Marathon.

The year 1926 a team surged which was were a lot of good players and for many, the real birth of what is now today Olimpia, Argentina and Espana (known as los Tejeros) which had a training camp at Barrio Guanacaste, Tegucigalpa.

In the year 1928 Club Deportivo Motagua was born, the name was given since at the time the river Motagua was being in dispute between Guatemala and Honduras. The enthusiastic Dr. Marco Antonio Ponce and the writer and poet Marco Antonio Rosa decided name "Motagua" for the disappearance of "America Aguila" and "Honduras Atletica"

In San Pedro Sula, a year later 1929 España (known since 1977 as Real Club Deportivo España) was founded.

Liga Nacional de Honduras

In the 1930s, soccer experienced a surge in popularity in the country. In 1948 with the birth of the Francisco Morazán Major Football League, the idea to organize football began to take shape.

Olimpia, Federal, Motagua, Argentina and Real España are the pioneers of the Liga Mayor. In 1948 the first championship began in the recently inaugurated Estadio Tiburcio Carias Andino as Victoria were made champions by beating Motagua; and three years later, in 1951, they repeated the trick. Due to the high support the League received at this time, the Confederacy Sports School Extra of Honduras {F.N.D.E.H.} was founded.

The cancellation of the court of the Stadium "Municipal" of San Pedro Sula was the catalyst that caused the sport's leaders of the northern and central parts of Honduras to join forces and caused the disappearance of the F.N.D.E.H.

On March 8, 1951, Juan Manuel Galvez gave life to the F.N.D.E.H. when he signed the presidential decree I number 97 and he vouched for the execution of the first Sports Congress that was carried out in the installations of the abandoned "National Gymnasium Rubén Alleys Valentine".

A decade after the creation of the F.N.D.E.H. and under the leadership of Hémerito F. Hernández, and also under Féderico Bunker Aguilar who had pioneered CONCACAF's creation at the same time, the idea to create the First National League of Soccer took shape between 1962 and 1963. Thanks in part to the aid of executives such as Alejandro Talbott that had studied in Mexico, the structure of that country's league was copied. On Saturday 3 and Sunday 4 April, 1964 the 15th National Congress created the league. The 15th National Congress also started the National League Not Fan of Honduras, LINAFUTH, that was founded May 10, that year.

The president of the Sports Confederacy was Oscar Kafati and the secretary was journalist Andrés Towers Son. Severa teams sent delegates. These included Olimpia, Troya, España, Honduras de El Progreso, Vida, Marathón, Motagua, La Salle, and Atlético Español Glidden. Those delegates were chosen to be to the first Provisional Board of Directors that remained headed by: President Oscar Lara Mejía, Secretary: José T. Castañeda, Treasurer: Jesus J. Handal, Fiscal: Humberto Soriano Aguilar and vocal: Oscar Kirckonell, Alfredo Bueso, René Bendeck.

The first date of the new National League was July 18, 1965, with the following results: Olimpia 3:0 Marathón; España 1:0 Troya; Honduras 3:0 Atlético Español; Vida 4:1 Motagua; and Platense 6:2 La Salle. Pedro Deras of El Progreso de Honduras was the first scorer of the National League in the 5th minute against Atlético Español. Platense was the first professional champion of Honduras winning the three rounds; and Atlético Español finished last, but there was no relegation.

The actual teams of the first division are (alphabetically): Deportes Savio, Hispano, Marathónmarker, Motagua, Olimpia, Platense, Real España, Real Juventud, Victoria, and Vida.

An interesting fact is that Real España is the only non-Spanish club that has been condecorated by the Spanish royalty (which is the origin of the "Real" part in Real España). That means that Real España is just as royal or "Real" than Real Madrid, Real Valladolid, Real Mallorca, and others. Nevertheless, Real Juventud included that part in the team´s name without receiving any condecoration.

Honduras football records

Seasons in Honduran football

The following articles detail the major results and events in each season since 1896-97.

1960s: 1965-66 1966-67 1967-68 1968-69
1970s: 1969-70 1970-71 1971-72 1972-73 1973-74 1974-75 1975-76 1976-77 1977-78 1978-79
1980s: 1979-80 1980-81 1981-82 1982-83 1983-84 1984-85 1985-86 1986-87 1987-88 1988-89
1990s: 1989-90 1990-91 1991-92 1992-93 1993-94 1994-95 1995-96 1996-97 1997-98 A | C 1998-99
2000s: 1999-00 A | C 2000-01 A | C 2001-02 A | C 2002-03 A | C 2003-04 A | C 2004-05 A | C 2005-06 A | C 2006-07 A | C 2007-08 A | C 2008-09 A | C

In Octuber 14, 2009 Honduras qualified to their second World Cup after 27 years.

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