World Cup 2014: Costa Rica vs Greece – strengths, weaknesses and key men
A look ahead to the Last 16 encounter between these sides
Friday 27 June 2014
It is only their second time in the last 16 – the first since Italia ’90 – and they clearly caught teams by surprise. They blitzed Uruguay in the second half for their first win, then out-manoeuvred Italy.
Up against players who have proven themselves at the top level, there is likely to be a point when Costa Rica’s lack of tested experience and quality bring them up short. Until then, they are thrilling.
Joel Campbell terrified Uruguay and then Italy with his direct running off the front, his speed and his eye for a goal, which make him a perfect partner for the more creative Bryan Ruiz.
Having overachieved before, they play with a relaxed confidence in their natural game, an unembarrassed embrace of their defensive style of play. In their spirit and unity, they represent a club side.
They reached the last 16 with two goals in three group games, which is impressive efficiency, but they will be facing even better defences now. The chances of them scoring will get even slimmer.
Georgios Samaras' late penalty is celebrated by Greece
Georgios Samaras is probably Greece’s only player who is capable of producing something from nothing, which is what they need because they do not exactly carve their opponents open.
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