November 15, 2016
MNT routed at Costa Rica in WCQ
SAN JOSE, Costa Rica -- The United States has endured and experienced more than its share of problems, headaches and struggles in Costa Rica over the years.
|John Brooks and the US backline were burned for four unanswered goals by Costa Rica in Tuesday night's World Cup qualifier.
Linda Cuttone/Sports Vue Images
On Tuesday night, the Americans hit a new low.
They were thrashed by the Ticos, 4-0, at Estadio Nacional as the hosts struck three times during a nightmarish 10-minute span in the second half.
Second-half substitute Joel Campbell tallied twice and Johan Venegas and Christian Bolanos also scored for the Ticos, who never have lost a home qualifier to the Americans, who have a 0-9-1 mark here.
The Costa Ricans (2-0-0) moved atop the hexagonal with six points in the CONCACAF final round while the last-place Americans fell to 0-0-2. The four goals were the most surrendered by the USA in a qualifier since a 4-2 loss to Canada on October 13, 1968.
Costa Rican goalkeeper Keylor Navas, who performs for Real Madrid, did not have much work as he was credited with the shutout.
The Ticos broke through in the 44th minute. Midfielder Rándall Azofeifa started the sequence by changing the direction of the play with a long pass to Christian Bolanos in the left corner. With his marker, defender Omar Gonzalez, giving him some room, Bolanos lofted a cross into the box that Venegas headed home from six yards at the near post past goalkeeper Brad Guzan for a 1-0 advantage.
It was all Costa Rica in the second half. The hosts took advantage of a USA turnover in the 68th minute as midfielder Bryan Ruiz raced down the right flank to find Bolanos, who headed the ball home from six yards.
Campbell, who replaced Venegas in the 67th minute, took center stage in the 77th minute, as he latched onto a loose ball and scored from 10 yards for a three-goal advantage.
Defender Ronald Matarrita sent a ball over the USA defense to Campbell, who slotted the ball past Guzan in the 78th minute to close out the rout.
Guzan was spectacular, making several big saves to keep the USA within striking distance, particularly in the first half.
The game was costly to the Americans for another reason. Defender Timothy Chandler and midfielder Jermaine Jones accrued their second yellow cards of the hexagonal. They both must sit out the USA's next game at home against Honduras on March 24.