MANAUS, Brazil (AP) — If there is one team looking forward to playing in the hot and humid conditions of the Amazon rainforest, it's Honduras.
The Central American country has a similar climate to Manaus, so the players view Wednesday's World Cup match against Switzerland at the Arena da Amazonia as a more of a reward than a curse.
"We're used to it. The temperature is not a problem for us," Honduras defender Juan Carlos Garcia said Tuesday. "We will, of course, benefit from it."
Honduras is so comfortable in the heat and humidity that the team even plays qualifying matches under similar conditions in San Pedro Sula to put opposing teams at a disadvantage.
It clearly helped, since the Central Americans are in Brazil at their third World Cup. But Honduras coach Luis Fernando Suarez said the steamy weather shouldn't be a problem for either team.
"People just complain too much, that's my opinion. But this is normal in any tournament," Suarez said. "You don't win a match or lose a match because of conditions or weather. A professional football player has to be ready for all conditions."
The game will start at 4 p.m. local time, two hours earlier than the previous three World Cup matches in Manaus. At that time of day, some of the field is still exposed to the sun.
Honduras needs to beat Switzerland to have any chance of advancing to the second round, and needs to win big.