Tempers are mainly running high amongst the Costa Rican fans who greeted the US at the airport with jeers and chants. They pelted the US bus with eggs as it left the airport and even had some taxi drivers arrange traffic jams. Welcome to Costa Rica I guess. To their credit, not all Costa Rican fans were onboard with this, with many calling it a “disgrace” and embarrassment.” However, it is clear that the Costa Ricans have been waiting a long time to avenge the loss in Denver. As shown in the picture and the video below, many of the Costa Ricans thought that the outcome of the game in Denver was unfair because of the blizzard that rolled through Colorado that weekend. To an extent, I agree. Having been at the game, it was plain to see that the conditions were not suitable for playing soccer. Especially as the snow intensified in the second half and passes across the midfield would land and just stick in the snow. What it seems the Costa Ricans are forgetting is that the referee attempted to stop the game in the second half only to have both sides protest a stoppage. It was only after the final whistle blew and the US walked away with a 1-0 win that Los Ticos made an official protest to FIFA and were shot down. March wasn’t the first time, the US had dashed the hopes of the Costa Rican side. In a 2009 qualifier for the World Cup in South Africa, the US scored a late equalizing goal to draw 2-2 with Costa Rica. The US was already through to the World Cup, but the Costa Ricans needed a win to clinch their spot. The draw, however, forced them into an elimination round where they lost via a 2-1 aggregate. The US also scored a late goal in the Gold Cup back in July to sweep the group en route to a Gold Cup championship.
Here’s the US roster for these two matches:
Brad Guzan, Tim Howard*, Nick Rimando
DaMarcus Beasley, Matt Besler, John Brooks, Geoff Cameron*, Edgar Castillo, Michael Parkhurst, Omar Gonzalez, Michael Orozco
Kyle Beckerman, Alejandro Bedoya, Michael Bradley*, Mix Diskerud, Fabian Johnson*, Jermaine Jones*, Graham Zusi
Jozy Altidore*, Clint Dempsey*, Landon Donovan, Aron Johannsson, Eddie Johnson
Michael Parkhurst replaces injured Brad Evans.
If either Aron Johannson or John Brooks play, they will officially be cap-tied to the US.
* denotes player carrying yellow card
In other soccer news, the US women took on Mexico in a friendly in Washington DC last night and well quite frankly the game was over in the first thirty minutes. The US routed the Mexican side 7-0 as Sydney Leroux got a hat trick (four goals in total). Abby Wambach increased her goals total with the game’s first goal. She has now scored 161 international goals. You can see the highlights below, but to sum it up. It was all USA.