Odds Costa Rica Will Win World Cup
Costa Rica is a distant +5000 longshot to win a highly competitive Group D, and with good reason. They have a formidable defense, but the jury remains out on their ability to score. The biggest knock on Costa Rica may be their inability to maintain possession of the ball; a deficiency that will be exploited by England and Italy. However, it is important to remember that this squad has beaten some pretty good opponents in the last year.
To the surprise of nobody, Costa Rica faced an uphill struggle on the road to qualifying for the World Cup for just the fourth time in the nation’s history. However, the squad posted very solid wins over Mexico and USA during the qualification stage. Costa Rica shocked the world by advancing to the Group of 16 in their first World Cup appearance in 1990. The odds of history repeating itself are low, but Costa Rica could play spoiler in a group where every victory will matter.
Early World Cup Pick
Costa Rica will have little history to rely on when they take to the pitch against some strong Group D opponents. The squad has never played Italy or England, and has faced Uruguay only four times in their history, most recently in a qualification playoff ahead of the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. Costa Rica’s defense will need to be in top form throughout the Group Stage, given the offensive firepower they will face. There are no easy matches for Costa Rica, but their best chance to play spoiler may come against a very young English side, who may have their backs to the wall in the final match of Group Stage action.
Costa Rica Qualifying Results - How they got to the World Cup
Costa Rica amassed 18 points, good for second place in CONCACAF Hex qualifying. The highlights of the qualification stage were a pair of 2-1 wins over USA and Mexico.
07/02/13 Panama 2 – 2 Costa Rica
23/03/13 United States 1 – 0 Costa Rica
27/03/13 Costa Rica 2 - 0 Jamaica
08/06/13 Costa Rica 1 – 0 Honduras
12/06/13 Mexico 0 – 0 Costa Rica
19/06/13 Costa Rica 2 – 0 Panama
07/09/13 Costa Rica 3 – 1 United States
11/09/13 Jamaica 1 – 1 Costa Rica
11/10/13 Honduras 1 – 0 Costa Rica
16/10/13 Costa Rica 2 – 1 Mexico
Costa Rica World Cup Group Play Schedule
14/06/14 Uruguay vs. Costa Rica - Estadio Castelão
20/06/14 Italy vs. Costa Rica - Arena Pernambuco
24/06/14 Costa Rica vs. England - Estadio Mineirão
Costa Rica Key Players
Bryan Ruiz FW, Fulham – Captain of the Costa Rican national side, Ruiz has 12 goals in 61 appearances and has proven to be spectacular when he wants to be.
Keylor Navas GK, Levante – Making a name as one of the best goalkeepers in Spain’s La Liga, the 27-year-old will be put to the test at Brazil 2014.
Joel Campbell FW, Arsenal, on loan at Olympiakos – 21-year-old striker is one of Costa Rica’s few legitimate offensive threats.