Gustavo Zelaya has been at Marcet for a year and half. Thanks to his talent and devotion he’s received a call up to the Honduran U-17s squad.

He went home for Christmas to spend time with his family, have fun with his friends and rest. Santa Claus had other plans installed for Gustavo, he left a call up to his country’s U-17s national squad under the tree. This meant more training sessions and more work but it’s the most sought after present for any person that’s life goal is to become a professional footballer.

Gustavo Zelaya has been at Marcet’s High Performance Academy for a year and a half. He came to Barcelona in June 2015 to forward his footballing career. A very complicated decision for a 14 year old to make. Football made him leave his homeland and in return he would have to go through hard training sessions in a far away country.

Time took care of showing Gustavo that he chose the correct path. Although what seemed like difficult conditions in the short term for such a young player, in the end it turned into the start of a story of personal success. With Gustavo’s technique, seriousness and desire to make it combined with the methodology he found in Barcelona. It was a recipe to grow his talent and his work ethic has already gained him rewards.

“From the beginning he’s shown great quality with the ball at his feet and stood out thanks to his strength”, says Alberto Martín, the young Honduran’s coach. “He’s always worked at a very good level thanks to his one of his best attributes, his consistency. Thanks to this he has stable values that are very close to what is demanded in professional football.

Gustavo has progressed positively in Barcelona and today he is a very complete left back. “He’s good at defending, but is also very assuring when going forward”, Martín explains. “His positioning on the pitch is always correct, he’s a great passer, he doesn’t lose the ball and puts pressure on his rival when he has to… And in training he stands out due to his devotion, consistency and his work ethic”. All of this makes it hard to find an Academy player with as much potential as Gustavo.

Positive attitude

Everyone agrees on highlighting the Honduran wing back’s exemplary behaviour. Not only do his coaches highlight his “positive attitude” and his “great energy to continuously improve”, but also his teammates find him to be a “great friend” and a person that’s “friendly, educated and self-contained”.

Some of the traits that Gustavo is currently using whilst serving Honduras’ U-17 squad. José Francisco Valladares’ team that were based in the city of Siguatepeque on the 17th of last December, just a day after the Marcet Soccer Camp started in San Pedro Sula. The event – the first of its kind in the Central American country – is a great opportunity for all of the young footballers that want to follow Gustavo’s footsteps, who after the holiday period will be coming back to Barcelona to start a new chapter in his promising career.