With Euro 2020 having come to an end, all focus shifts to the Gold Cup, which kicked off on Saturday with the goalless draw between defending champions Mexico and Trinidad and Tobago. Costa Rica, one of many teams hoping to get their hands on this trophy, embark on their campaign today on Monday, taking on Guadeloupe at 9 p.m. ET at the Exploria Stadium.
Long gone is the Ticos side that made it to the 2014 FIFA World Cup quarterfinals, climbing as high as 15th in the FIFA rankings thanks to their heroics in Brazil. They picked up a point against England while beating Uruguay, Italy, and Greece in that memorable run but heading into the tournament, Bryan Ruiz and Co. have not managed a single victory in their last 11 outings.
Not only that, but the Central American side has lost their last four games in a row, including success penalty shootout defeats in the CONCACAF Nations League against Mexico and Honduras. One would have to go way back to November 2019 for Costa Rica's last win, a 2-1 triumph over Curacao, which came shortly before the COVID-19 pandemic and the chaos brought about by its outburst.
A lot has occurred during Los Ticos winless run, including a managerial change, with Luis Fernando Suarez being given the helm of the national team at the end of June. Can the newly-appointed boss improve their fortunes at international tournaments? Their CONCACAF Nations League campaign ended in a fourth-placed finish, but do not let that deceive you as the Group C side managed only one win throughout that tournament. Their Gold Cup run in 2019 wasn't far off as well, registering only two wins in the group stage, and as a result finishing as runners-up behind Haiti, before crashing out in the quarterfinals at the hand of Mexico.
Will Guadeloupe hand their opponents a fifth straight defeat? Les Boug'Wada will be making their first appearance in this tournament since 2011. Their spot in the 2021 Gold Cup was secured in unforgettable fashion, winning 10-9 on penalties against Guatemala after drawing 1-1 in normal time. Do not miss this showdown!
Costa Rica: Bryan Ruiz and Joel Campbell are both in the squad so it will be interesting to see whether these two attackers with European experience will guide their nation. Unfortunately, Keylor Navas did not make the 23-man and cannot be called upon.
Guadeloupe: Matthias Phaeton will likely continue at the heart of Les Boug'Wada's attack, with Raphael Mirval also tipped to play an important role for his nation. Yohann Thuram, a relative of the iconic Lillian Thuram, will be the man in between the sticks for Jocelyn Angloma's side.
Match details, result and original broadcast info
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