Hendry Thomas is an unfamiliar name to many English Football fans. But from the vantage point of the CONCACAF region, he’s becoming a giant, an emerging titan in the relatively weak word of Central American football.
Thomas, is Honduran, like his current Wigan team mate Maynor Figueroa and former Wigan man Wilson Palacios. The player has emerged as a hard man for the Honduran National Team, and a successful two way player as his nation seeks its first World Cup birth since 1982.
I watched Thomas score his first international goal in Fort Lauderdale’s venerable Lockhart Stadium in early 2008 versus Colombia in a 2-1 victory. In that match Thomas showed his ability as a two way player that will serve him well in England.
Thomas sat right in front of the Honduran back four in that game breaking up many a Colombian attack, while also making daring runs forward to supplement the attack. Recently, he’s provided the same quality in World Cup qualifying.
The player, who was successful at Olimpia in the Honduran domestic league, agreed to join Wigan in 2008 but was denied a UK Work Permit. This time however, with Thomas enjoying an extended run in his national side’s starting eleven, he was approved and joined the Premier League club.
Two way players are essential in Roberto Martinez’s setup at Wigan, and Thomas provides a quality at an affordable price, that a small club needs.
Dave Whelan’s management brilliance has seen a side that was not even in the Football League, 30 years back have an extended top flight run. This comes at the very same time that legendary clubs like Nottingham Forrest and Leeds United have been buried in the lower divisions for a long period.
Thomas is another piece in Wigan’s puzzle to Premier League stability and success.