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Herediano beats Alajuelense in the first leg of Costa Rica soccer final

Herediano took a slim advantage Sunday in the final of the 2019 Apertura Championship of Costa Rican soccer by beating Alajuelense, 1-0, in the first leg at the Eladio Rosabal Cordero Stadium.

Ariel Soto was the author of the game’s lone goal at nine minutes. The defender may have gotten lucky as the ball ricocheted off his back after a corner kick:

Alajuelense played the majority of the match with 10 men after central defenseman Junior Diaz, who participated in Costa Rica’s legendary 2014 World Cup run, was sent off at minute 18.

The return game of the final will be held Saturday at the Alejandro Morera Soto Stadium in Alajuela.

Alajuelense will be forced to win by a difference of two goals to earn the title. In this “Gran Final,” the away goals rule is not applied to resolve a possible tie in points and goals.

Herediano seeks its 28th title (the last one was at the 2018 Apertura); Alajuelense its 30th (the last in Winter 2013).

 

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