Costa Rica‘s national soccer team played probably the most boring game of its history Wednesday morning (Tico time) in Tehran, Iran – but not merely for the result of a 0-0 draw. Nobody showed up to see it.
Ahead of the match, the Iran Football Federation (IFF) announced that Tehran’s massive 100,000-seat Azadi stadium could not seat one spectator, citing problems with plumbing in a cold front that has stormed through the country this week.
“Considering Tehran’s current weather condition and Azadi stadium’s frozen water supply pipes of the washroom facilities, in case of delays in maintenance of water pipes, there is a possibility of Iran-Costa Rica match to be played in an empty Azadi stadium.
In that case, Iranian football fans have to watch the game through their TV sets,” IFF head Ali Kafashian said, according to online soccer news portal Goal.com.
More action certainly heated up Azadi the last time the Ticos took the field there in March 2006, when the Iranian hosts beat Costa Rica 3-2.
This time around, behind closed doors, Iran sought victory once more, setting up at least 10 good chances of scoring in the first half but failing to seal the deal on any one of them.
Wednesday’s game was one of the final friendly matches in Costa Rica’s run-up to the 2010 World Cup qualifiers. But following Sweden’s revenge on Jan. 13, a 0-1 loss for Costa Rica, chances for success still don’t bode well for the Ticos. Their draw with Iran was the ninth winless game in a row, reported newswire ACAN-EFE, the worst streak ever for the “Tricolor” bunch. The national club hasn’t won since June 12, when it beat Guadaloupe 1-0.
Next up, on Feb. 6, fans will see if the Ticos can avoid taking the streak of no-winners to 10.