For the third consecutive World Cup date, Costa Rica will be one of the best 32 teams in the world. In Qatar itself, the ‘Tico’ team overcame the last hurdle, New Zealand, in a match that they had to suffer until the end, despite the numerical superiority of the Americans.

Everything started to go off without a hitch for the Costa Rican team. Barely two minutes had been played when Campbell sent a center by Bennette to the back of the net from the right-wing. The former Betis and Villarreal player calmed down the madness in the ‘Tico’ community that gave color to Ahmad Ben Ali.

He would react, going from less to more, with the ocean team. Basing the entire attack on the physical superiority of the Chris Wood tank, the New Zealanders approached Navas’ frame with some danger. So much so, that they tied the game. Wood took advantage of a bad clearance to set the tables, although the referee annulled it for a foul prior to the target.

He managed to hold Costa Rica in the restart, without fissures. Suárez’s changes gave more vitality to the Costa Rican midfielder who, even so, had to hold their breath when the ball flew towards Wood’s head.

Despite the expulsion of Barbarouses, the New Zealanders finished the game focused on attack, bombing Keylor Navas’ area in search of an isolated header from one of their towers to force extra time. They would be able to put up with a Costa Rica that would be Spain’s first rival in Qatar.

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