Costa Rica

By Laurence Kelson

Team: Costa Rica

Nickname: Los Ticos

World Cup appearances: 4 (Best finish was quarter-finals in 2014)

World ranking: 25

Coach: Oscar Ramirez

Captain: Bryan Ruiz

Player to watch: Keylor Navas
It’s not often that a goalkeeper can be considered the star player for a team but Keylor Navas fits the bill. The Real Madrid keeper has just come off his third straight UEFA Champions League title and was named in UEFA’s Champions League squad of the season. His heroics in goal led Costa Rica to the quarter-finals in 2014, only conceding two goals in five matches and producing a series of memorable saves in a penalty shootout against Greece. Costa Rica will once again be relying on him to produce superhuman performances if they are to emulate their 2014 form.

Costa Rica in action against England in a pre-world cup friendly. Keylor Navas in goal (bottom right).

NowUC predictor: Group stage exit
Costa Rica came second in the CONCACAF qualifying rounds but weren’t exactly blowing teams away, only winning four out of ten matches. They are going into Group E with Brazil, Serbia and Switzerland and, in such company, are likely to finish last in the group. They lack the firepower to threaten the other teams, only scoring four goals in their past six matches. Their best attacking threat is 32-year-old Bryan Ruiz who’s been struggling with injuries and form over the past year. Coach Oscar Ramirez likes to employ the 5-4-1 formation which enables for a strong defensive backline and quick counter-attacking. Although the focus is on defensive structure, the attacking prowess of their opposition is likely to prove too much and Los Ticos will say adios to Russia at the end of the group stage.

Tags: , , , , , ,

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

Getting Real About Illicit Drug Use at EDM Festivals

The electronic dance music (EDM) business, propelled by large scale music festivals, has grown to an estimated worth of $4.5 billion, […]

Penalties – the ‘new’ normal

By Etta McEwan Penalties bring about three things, controversy, criticism, and conversation. And after week one of the 2018 FIFA […]

Brazil leave it until injury time to score 2-0 win over Costa Rica

Brazil 2 (Coutinho 90’ + 1, Neymar 90’ + 7) Costa Rica 0 By Caleb Mitchell A persistent Brazil has […]

Serbia’s hopes hang by a thread after 2-1 loss Switzerland

Serbia 1 (Mitrovic 5’) Switzerland 2 (Xhaka 52’, Shaqiri 90’) By Laurence Kelson Switzerland has come from behind to steal […]

Musa brace keeps Nigeria’s World Cup campaign alive

Nigeria 2 (Musa 49’, 75’) Iceland 0 PHOTO! Musa wheels away as he celebrates his goal. Nigeria 1-0 Iceland #SoarSuperEagles […]

The World Cup Show podcast – Episode 2

Everyone can’t stop talking about VAR. Nor can we, so we’ve called in the video technology expert, Dr Roland Goecke […]

Argentina face elimination after Croatian catastrophe

Argentina 0 Croatia 3 (Rebic 53’, Modric 80′, Rakitic 90+1’) By Jakob Gisik Argentina is on the brink of elimination […]