• Costa Rica Coffee Guide

New lineup falls short, South Korea beats La Sele 2-0

September 7, 2018

Costa Rica’s men’s national team experienced abundant growing pains Friday when it debuted a youth-laden lineup and a new-look formation in a friendly against South Korea.

In its first action since this summer’s World Cup, La Sele fell 2-0, a deserved result as Costa Rica struggled to generate offensive opportunities or even maintain possession.

Despite starting the match in a 4-2-3-1 formation designed to empower defensive stability and attacking creativity, Costa Rica managed only a single shot on target late in the second half. Meanwhile, South Korea’s versatile Nam Tae-Hee bothered the backline throughout.

In the 33rd minute, Nam slipped behind Tico defender Cristian Gamboa, who dragged down the midfielder. South Korean captain Son Heung-Min missed the ensuing penalty, but Lee Jae-Sung was left unmarked and tapped in the rebound to open the scoring.

Nam sealed the result in the 78th minute by finishing a South Korean counterattack with a fierce short-range strike.

If Costa Rica qualifies for the 2022 World Cup, the team it sends to Qatar will look vastly different from the one fans saw this summer in Russia — which ranked as the oldest squad in the tournament. Interim manager Ronald González emphasized youth Friday, starting Mayron Clayton, 24, at striker and supporting him with a midfield featuring Jimmy Marín, 20, Allan Cruz, 22, and Elías Aguilar, 26.

The inexperience showed against South Korea, which dominated possession and had a flurry of scoring chances midway through the first half. But Costa Rican goalkeeper Esteban Alvarado made a pair of sure-handed saves to keep the game close.

La Sele will face Japan on Tuesday at Panasonic Stadium near Osaka in another international friendly.

You may be interested

New at SJO: More staff to enforce Covid measures
Costa Rica
Costa Rica

New at SJO: More staff to enforce Covid measures

The Tico Times - June 15, 2021

Aeris, the company that manages Costa Rica's Juan Santamaría International Airport, says it has contracted additional staff to enforce coronavirus-related…

50% off Southwest Airlines flights to Costa Rica
Costa Rica
233 views
Costa Rica
233 views

50% off Southwest Airlines flights to Costa Rica

Alejandro Zúñiga - June 15, 2021

Southwest Airlines has launched a 50% off sale for its 50th anniversary, and the promotion includes flights to Costa Rica.…

‘Indignation, anger and fury’ in response to Costa Rica corruption probe
Costa Rica
27 views
Costa Rica
27 views

‘Indignation, anger and fury’ in response to Costa Rica corruption probe

AFP and The Tico Times - June 15, 2021

Costa Rican investigators on Monday carried out 57 raids, including on the building housing the country's top executive offices, in…

The Tico Times | Top Costa Rica News, Travel, Culture and Sports