Costa Rica vs England match preview: World Cup 2014
A look ahead to England’s last stand at the 2014 World Cup
Tuesday 24 June 2014
England have to bow out early from the World Cup as two defeats from Italy and Uruguay respectively, as well as two wins for Costa Rica, mathematically spell the end of the Three Lions’ campaign.
However, Roy Hodgson’s side will be looking to go out with a bang and beat Group D’s undefeated team.
The manager could give some playing time to footballers that have not seen much action such as Everton’ Ross Barkley, Southampton’s Luke Shaw, and Manchester United’s Chris Smalling and Phil Jones. The same goes for winger James Milner and striker Rickie Lambert who are expected to definitely feature in this match.
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Rumours are pouring regarding Steven Gerrard’s international future as the Liverpool man is expected to sit on the bench and hand the armband to Chelsea legend Frank Lampard. Gerrard will make his final decision after the group stage.
Costa Rica, the revelation of this year’s competition, need at least a draw to win the group that everyone saw them as its ‘whipping boys’. Manager Jorge Luis Pinto has decided to make a few changes in his starting line-up so as to rest his key players ahead of the next round. Therefore, Fulham striker Bryan Ruiz as well as Arsenal’s Joel Campbell are both expected to sit on the bench.
KICK-OFF: Tuesday, 5pm
PAST THREE MEETINGS…
Both sides have never faced each other
This is the first time ever those two sides will square off.
Costa Rica have advanced to the Round of 16 for the second time in their history, as their first qualification occurred at Italia ’90.
If England lose then they will record the worst World Cup performance ever with zero points at the group stage.
Wayne Rooney finally scored his first ever World Cup goal after eight years since his World Cup debut.
Last time England played a World Cup match at Belo Horizonte they were surprisingly beaten by outsiders USA in 1950.
Costa Rica to win: 4.2
England to win: 1.9
TV: Live on ITV at 5pm
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