Costa Rica National Football Team
The Costa Rica National Football team represents Costa Rica in the football world. The team is administered by Costa Rican Football Federation, which is the governing body for football in the country. The country is a member of FIFA since 1927 and a member of the Central American Football Union since 1990.
Costa Rica football team has gained significant importance for being the most successful national football team in Central America’s history. The team has won three CONCACAF Championships back in 1963, 1969, and 1989. Having won four championships until 2017, Costa Rica is the leading team in the Copa Centro Americana tournament.
Costa Rica is the only team from Central America to have participated in five FIFA world cup editions. In addition to that, the Costa Rica National football team has the highest average of football Elo Ranking in Central America.
Costa Rica team has been in eyes since the 1980s as it has been continuously improving its performance since then. The team showed a classy performance in the 1990 FIFA world cup in Italy. They reached the knockout stage in their debut appearance and also finished second in their group stage in the first round. Costa Rica also qualified for the 2002 and 2006 world cups.
Costa Rica achieved their best performance back in 2014 by finishing top in their group. Their group consisted of three former champions, i.e., Uruguay, Italy, and England. Also, they defeated Greece in round 16 via plenty of shootouts. In this world cup, they reached the quarter-finals for the first time but were defeated by the Netherlands in the plenty shootout.
History of Costa Rican Football Team
Costa Rican national team made its debut appearance in the Independence Centenary Games held in Guatemala City back in September 1921. The team gained a significant reputation as they won their first game 7-0 against El Salvador. Costa Rican football team won the trophy by defeating Guatemala 6-0 in the finals.
In the late 1940s, the team acquired a nickname, “The Gold Shorties.” During the 1950s and 1960s, Costa Rican football team was the second strongest team (After Mexico) in the CONCACAF zone. They finished as runners-up in the World Cup qualifiers in 1958, 1962, and 1966.
Despite all efforts and consistency, Costa Rica failed to reach any world cup round in that decade.
Costa Rica Football Team Home Stadium
The home stadium of Costa Rica Stadium is Estadio Nacional. It was opened back in 2011. Costa Rica plays most of their world cup qualifying matches against North and Central American teams (Mexico, Panama, USA, Cuba, Jamaica, Canada). Also, the team plays their friendly games against teams across the globe and train in this stadium.
Costa Rica Football Team Kit
Costa Rican players traditionally wear a red jersey with blue shorts and white socks. Their away kit is Juventus-styled consisting of a black and white striped jersey with white shorts. The socks can either be black or white.
The team uses these colors in the away kit because these colors are the ones in the CS La Liberated, one of the oldest clubs in Costa Rica. However, this stripped kit was replaced with a white kit back in 1997.
Performances in FIFA World Cup by Costa Rica Football Team
Let’s analyze the performance of the Costa Rica football team in World Cups.
Costa Rican football team did not qualify for the world cups in the 1970s and 1980s. In 1989, the team won the CONCACAF championship to qualify for the World cup for the first time. Italia 90 or Italy 90 is regarded as a seminal moment in Costa Rican football history.
At that time, Costa Rican football players were known for being non-professional because most players had other jobs and weren’t making their living playing football.
Costa Rica did not qualify for the World cups in 1994 and 1998; however, they were invited to the Copa America for the first time in 1997.
Costa Rica qualified for the 2002 world cup held in South Korea and Japan. They displayed a great display of football in this world cup but were eliminated based on goal difference because they finished behind Turkey on the points table.
Costa Rica appeared in the world cup 2006 as well, but they could not depict their best performance in this world cup. They lost to Ecuador and Poland and were eliminated from the world cup in the early stages.
Similarly, Costa Rica qualified for the world cups in 2010. 2014 and 2018 as well. Although they could not win the competition, yet the team depicted notable performances in various games and came into the spectators’ eyes.