From College to the Pros - The US soccer ladder

Saturday, February 07, 2009

The Felix Garcia Conundrum

Apologies for being away for so long, I have moved countries and restarted my education in a new (extremely hard) school.

I think that many soccer fans look at problems and fail to understand the complexity of them. Hence the use of the word "conundrum" in the title. According to Meriam-Webster dictionary it is defined as " a question or problem having only a conjectural answer b: an intricate and difficult problem." This is crucial to understanding the scope of Felix Garcia's situation with the Houston Dynamo. It is an extremely intricate problem, and as we are fans with little inside knowledge we can only use what we know to express an opinion on the situation.

Here is what I wrote about Felix in September:

Felix Garcia
Club/College: PDL Laredo Heat
Age: 18; July 30, 1990
Position: Forward
Squad Chance: Almost a lock.

Felix Garcia is a wonderkid. He has been a favorite of Thomas Rongen's so far in this cycle. While all reports say he is "raw," he is a 6 footer with a lot of skill that is waiting to be honed in a professional environment. Apparently he is only a senior in HS this fall, so unless he drops out or graduates early he could still be an amateur by Summer 2009. He is reportedly getting looked at by MFL teams and I'm sure Rongen has been called about him by MLS teams.

To give you a rundown on what has been going on with Felix I suggest you read this article by Bernardo Fallas of the Houston Chronicle: http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/sports/soc/6248997.html

Basically the very talented Felix signed with Houston, then went AWOL: "Since last week’s introduction, Garcia has walked out of an informal practice and skipped a meeting and mandatory physical. He also left town without notice, which caused him to miss the first week of training camp, actions that might hurt his chances of ever stepping onto the field donning the orange jersey."

No one knows for sure what the problem is. Apparently he is very close to his family and girlfriend saying this at his signing ceremony: "I feel very happy to be here. I came here to play soccer and enjoy my life with my girlfriend. I want to take the opportunity to thank those that had something to do with this. It's a dream come true, and I can't wait to get on the pitch." (MLSNET.com)

It's obvious that the desire is there, and he has never had problems before with the U-20's otherwise the very professional Rongen would have dropped him without a second thought. He has a reputation of being humble and hardworking. Whatever the problem is, it is complex, but it is nothing that should stop Felix from fulfilling his dream.

I hope that fans are patient and realize that Felix can be a great player for the Dynamo. I hope that Houston are in constant contact with Felix and make arrangements to help his family and girlfriend move to Houston if needed. I hope that they involve Rongen (who seems to be Felix's professional mentor at this point) in this transition. I hope that Felix realizes that the best thing for himself, his family, and his girlfriend is for Felix to make his way back to Houston and start his professional career. And mostly, I hope that this is not the last blog post you read about Felix Garcia.

Contact me at USvsIreland AT gmail.com

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3 Comments:

  • USvI, I couldn't agree with you more. Frankly, I'd be shocked if the Houston organization isn't just very careful and very supportive of this kid and his new family.

    I know when Jozy signed with NY, the Red Bulls were very careful with his development. I believe, he spent most of the 2006 season still in Bradenton, finishing high school before joining the team at the very end of the year. He even missed a game to go to his high school prom (as did Mike Magee before him). This is how a professional organization handles a talented teenager, not by talking tough, talking about doghouses or hammering professional responsibilities.

    Garcia needs to be taught what professional responsibilities are in a supportive and friendly manner. He needs a mentor on the team. If Houston can't do this, send the kid, his girl and his child to NY where I'm confident the organization here would do it.

    Hell, I would even put in money and guidance to help this kid get settled. I don't think I would be the only fan to offer to do so either.

    By Anonymous Eugene, at 11:25 PM  

  • Thanks for the support Eugene. You made a good point there. Hopefully everything works out for the best!

    By Blogger USvsIreland, at 7:19 PM  

  • he is very young, but from what I have seen so far, he is very talented and I would bet all my money by contacting a pay per head company and bet on him as the next US soccer star and I am seriously about this

    By Blogger joseph burrell, at 10:03 PM  

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