Fans of the Costa Rican national team built an electric atmosphere at the Estadio Nacional last Friday.
The impressive Tico crowd welcomed the U.S. men’s team with rowdy chants and boisterous support for the home team. In the end, Costa Rica got revenge for the snow game last March in Denver, Colorado. La Sele thrashed the United States, 3-1, in a crucial World Cup qualifying match. The win moved Costa Rica atop the Concacaf regional standings, and one step closer to the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
There was no snow in this rematch between Costa Rica and the U.S., but there still were plenty of stunning images.
The Tico Times attended the final warm-up for the U.S. men’s team. A big thanks to US Soccer for being so accommodating (while certainly other organizations were not so friendly).
Thousands of Costa Ricans showed their colors. So did many Gringos. (And they both share the same colors). Most United Stats supporters, known as American Outlaws, were easy to identify. The Outlaws section, ironically, received police protection on all sides from neon-clad officers. Tico fans, meanwhile, went wild as La Sele boasted a decisive victory.
On the pitch, Costa Rica jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first 10 minutes and never looked back. A Clint Dempsey penalty kick moved the visitors to back within one goal, and the Stars and Stripes had several chances to tie the game. With 20 minutes remaining, La Sele’s Joel Campbell turned on his jets to race past the U.S. defense and score the final goal of the game.
CUANDO NO HAY NIEVE
NO HAY PROBLEMA
Costa Rican could book a ticket to Brazil with a victory Tuesday night in Jamaica.
Jamaica v Costa Rica 8 p.m.
At Columbus, Ohio
United States v Mexico 8 p.m.
Honduras v Panama 9 p.m.
Concacaf Standings (W-L-D; 3 matches remain)
Costa Rica 4-1-2 14 points
United States 4-2-1 13 points
Honduras 3-3-1 10 points
Mexico 1-1-5 8 points
Panama 1-2-4 7 points
Jamaica 0-4-3 3 points
(Top 3 teams advance to World Cup; 4th team plays New Zealand for berth)