Costa Rica will glance to stifle a skilled Spain crew with the defensive self-discipline they’re recognized for.
Who: Spain vs Costa Rica, Staff E
The place: Al Thumama Stadium
When: Wednesday, November 23 at 7pm (16:00 GMT)
FIFA score: Spain (7), Costa Rica (31)
Los Ticos — because the Costa Rica facet is understood — will probably be taking a look to copy their heroic performances on the 2014 Global Cup, the place they defied the chances and crowned a gaggle that incorporated 3 Global Cup winners: Uruguay, England and Italy. They then knocked out Greece within the spherical of 16, achieving the quarter-finals, the place they misplaced to the Netherlands on consequences.
They have got once more drawn a hard team this 12 months, with Germany, Spain and Japan.
In Spain, they are going to face a crew that features a mixture of younger promising gamers akin to 18-year-old Gavi and 19-year-old Pedri — each midfielders — in addition to seasoned veterans akin to Chelsea defender César Azpilicueta.
Beneath supervisor Luis Enrique, Spain have loved a powerful run of shape just lately, topping their UEFA International locations League team and choosing up a morale-boosting win in opposition to Portugal in September.
However any person who underestimates Costa Rica does so at their peril. Los Ticos have received their final 5 fits and notched up some spectacular performances of their Global Cup qualification marketing campaign, together with wins over Canada and america.
“The primary fit is all the time tough, however on paper, Spain is the favorite to overcome Costa Rica,” says Sayed Nabawy, a sports activities journalist specialising in Spanish soccer. “A win would give Spain self assurance within the subsequent sport, the place they are going to meet Germany.”
Costa Rica are anticipated to play a conservative logo of soccer. This can be a taste they have got develop into recognized for lately and is person who annoyed a number of high-profile groups in 2014. On the middle of the defensive construction is Keylor Navas, the Paris Saint-Germain shot-stopper who has made greater than 100 appearances for his nation.
Spain will glance to their attacking aptitude to damage down an often-stubborn Costa Rican defence. They are going to now not need a repeat in their opening fit at Euro 2020 in opposition to Sweden, the place they failed to attain regardless of having 17 pictures on function and a staggering 86 % of the ownership.
Costa Rica will face a difficult activity up entrance, with the 30-year-old ex-Arsenal ahead Joel Campbell dealing with the likes of Actual Madrid’s Dani Carvajal and Barcelona’s Eric Garcia in defence. Spain have now not conceded greater than two targets in a sport since they beat Croatia 5-3 at Euro 2020 greater than a 12 months in the past.
Spain have determined to go away a number of high-profile names out in their Global Cup squad, together with Navas’ former Actual Madrid teammate Sergio Ramos and Manchester United’s David de Gea.
Neither crew carried out neatly on the final Global Cup, with Costa Rica completing backside in their team with just one level and Spain shedding to Russia within the final 16. They are going to each need to make up for that during Qatar – beginning on Wednesday.