Costa Rica Sports News – Before the World Cup started and after the groups had been selected, I and many others did not give Costa Rica a chance to escape what seemed like a group of death. Powerhouse soccer countries and past World Cup champions Italy, Uruguay, and England looked like a daunting challenge that Costa Rica would have to overcome.
In game one Uruguay, Costa Rica entered as heavy underdogs even with Uruguay playing without one of their star players Suarez. After trailing 1 to 0 at half, Costa Rica dominated the second half scoring 3 goals and surprising the world on the World Cup stage.
After the win both Coach Pinto and the players held a different demeanor, one of confidence and that of a team that felt they could beat and play with anyone. The next challenge was Italy who was coming off a 2-1 win over England.
From the initial kickoff Costa Rica was in complete control of the game. other than a couple of chances by Mario Balotelli, Italy looked inferior to the Costa Rican team.
Late in the first half after a questionable non-call against Costa Rican forward Joel Campbell, Costa Rica regrouped on a counter attack.
Júnior Díaz crossed a ball that found the head of Bryan Ruiz. It hit the top cross bar and bounced into the goal. Pandemonium followed.
The second half was a struggle back and forth with only a few scoring chances as the Costa Rican defense shut down Italy.
As the final whistle sounded the entire country of Costa Rica that had bee glued to their televisions erupted in celebration. Costa Rica was moving on to the knockout round. There would be no more work for anyone in Costa Rica as the Cinderella “Ticos” keep proving the world wrong and are relishing the role as underdog.