San Jose, May 31 (IANS) The Costa Rican national team preparing for next month’s 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia held their first practice at full strength here with the addition of goalkeeper Keylor Navas.
The Real Madrid custodian arrived here on Tuesday from the Spanish capital after taking part in celebrations of the Blancos’ victory in the Champions League final last weekend, reports EFE news agency.
Navas will be available to coach Oscar Ramirez for next Sunday’s friendly against Northern Ireland at Estadio Nacional in San Jose, the squad’s final match in Costa Rica before the World Cup kicks off on June 14.
“It’s very important to have the complete team because we can hone the details together. It’s extra motivation to have Keylor for everything that he’s been doing. He’s a leader, a player we all listen to,” midfielder David Guzman told reporters on Wednesday.
Besides the work on the practice field, the team will spend time watching video of the sides they will face at the World Cup in Group E: Brazil, Serbia, and Switzerland.
Following Sunday’s contest here, the Costa Rican team will travel to Europe for a pair of international friendlies next week against England and Belgium.