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Familiar foes set for a tricky battle

Curitiba: Honduras and Ecuador, who lost their opening games, chase a vital World Cup victory on Friday in a game that will see both coaches plotting the downfall of their former teams.

In an unusual twist, Honduras are coached by Luis Fernando Suarez, the man who guided Ecuador to the last 16 in 2006, their best showing at a World Cup.

Ecuador are coached by Reinaldo Rueda, who was in charge of Honduras in their 2010 World Cup campaign when they failed to make it past the first round and did not score a goal.

To add to the feeling of familiarity, both coaches are Colombians.

“I had a great time in Honduras, but now I’m here and as always I must go for the win,” said Rueda.

“Honduras are a great team, we all know their ability. They didn’t start well, but they want and they need to win as much as we do,” he added.

The two teams have never met in a competitive fixture but played out eight draws in 13 friendlies.

They will not be able to settle for cancelling each other out on Friday as both need to win to maintain a realistic chance of progressing from a group which also includes France and Switzerland.

“I must have had about four or five of their current squad when I was there so I do know something about them,” Suarez said of rivals Ecuador.