Costa Rica beat Scotland in international friendly

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Glasgow, March 24 (IANS) Costa Rica showed its effectiveness with a goal scored by Marco Ureña, and its solidity in the interventions of Keylor Navas, leading it to defeat Scotland 1-0 in an international friendly here.

A combination by left back Bryan Oviedo and Marco Ureña ended with the latter sending the ball to the net and handing victory to the ‘Ticos’ in the friendly played at the Hampden Park Stadium here on Friday, reports EFE news agency.

McLeish’s Scotland, who replaced Gordon Strachan on the bench, could not get off to a good start and was overtaken by a Costa Rica that took better advantage of its situation with fast counterattacks, among its main strengths.

In an electric combination in the 13th minute of the match, Daniel Colindres put a low pass back that found Ureña inside the area, who accommodated the move and crossed with the inside of the right foot to score on Allan McGregor.

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The good performance of Navas as goalkeeper for the Central Americans helped to cement the advantage of the Costa Ricans in the first part, especially in a shot from McBurnie in minute 26, which Navas cleared without problems.

The young Scot McTominay, of Manchester United, completed 58 minutes before being substituted, in which he allowed himself to be seen timidly in midfield, always watched from the stands by José Mourinho, who came to watch the match.

Already in the second half, Scotland pressed against the ‘Ticos’ and was about to get the tie in a counter, when McGregor took the ball to Richie and the Newcastle winger shot at point-blank range to meet Navas’ saving mitts.

Barely disturbed in the second 45 minutes, Oscar Ramirez tied the victory and repeated the result that both teams reaped in the World Cup in Italy in 1990, when the Costa Ricans beat the British 1-0 in the group stage.

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As part of its preparation for the World Cup, Costa Rica will face Tunisia in Nice (France) on Mar. 27, while Scotland will face Hungary on the same day.

Costa Rica qualified for the World Cup after placing second, behind Mexico, in the CONCACAF zone and was placed in Group E along with Brazil, Switzerland and Serbia.

The ‘Ticos’ will debut against Serbia on Jun. 17, after which they will face Brazil on Jun. 22 and close the group phase against Switzerland on the 26th.

For its part, Scotland will not be in the World Cup, from which it has been absent since 1998, after coming third in their qualifying group behind England and Slovakia.

–IANS

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