In our Costa Rica preview, we look ahead to this summer’s tournament to preview Los Ticos, including their schedule of games as well as their predicted finish in the Copa America Centenario.

Costa Rica preview

Manager: Oscar Ramirez

Captain: Bryan Ruiz

Costa Rica preview: Squad:

GOALKEEPERS (3): Leonel Moreira (Herediano, CRC), Dany Carvajal (Saprissa, CRC), Patrick Pemberton (Alajuelense, CRC)

DEFENDERS (9): Johnny Acosta (Alajuelense, CRC), Francisco Calvo (Saprissa, CRC), Oscar Duarte (Espanyol, ESP), Cristian Gamboa (West Bromwich Albion, ENG), Ronald Matarrita (New York City FC, USA), Bryan Oviedo (Everton, ENG), José Salvatierra (Alajuelense, CRC), Michael Umaña (Persepolis, IRN), Kendall Waston (Vancouver Whitecaps FC, CAN)

MIDFIELDERS (8): Randall Azofeifa (Herediano, CRC), Christian Bolaños (Vancouver Whitecaps FC, CAN), Joel Campbell (Arsenal, ENG), Celso Borges (Deportivo La Coruña, ESP), Esteban Granados (Herediano, CRC), Bryan Ruiz (Sporting Lisbon, POR), Yeltsin Tejeda (Évian Thonon Gaillard, FRA), Johan Venegas (Montreal Impact, CAN)

FORWARDS (3): Johnny Woodly (Deportivo Carmelita, CRC), Álvaro Saborio (D.C. United, USA), Marco Ureña (Midtjylland, DEN)

Costa Rica preview

Costa Rica preview: Overview:

Costa Rica showed emphatically at the 2014 World Cup that it’d be unwise to write them off in any competition, although they come into this tournament as not only an underdog, but a team unlikely to progress from a difficult Group A.

Indeed, Los Ticos are alongside the hosts United States, a dangerous Colombia team and a well-drilled Paraguay outfit, so if Ramirez’s men can raise themselves to make it beyond the initial phase it’d be a significant achievement. They do possess players that are capable of springing a surprise, though.

With the exceptional Keylor Navas in goal Costa Rica always have a chance of getting through spells of heavy pressure. Additionally, further up the field Bryan Oviedo is a very handy footballer to have, capable of doing a strong job in a variety of roles, while the likes of Joel Campbell and Ruiz should pose a threat to the opposition’s goal.

Costa Rica would have been disappointed with their efforts in the Gold Cup last summer, in which they drew all of their games in 90 minutes before eventually losing out to Mexico in extra time in the quarters. It shows they’re capable of shutting teams down well, often utilising a five-man defence; Ramirez will want to see more in the final third, though.

The signs are positive in that sense. Campbell has enjoyed a decent campaign at Arsenal with some starts and impressive cameos from the bench, while Ruiz, after a tumultuous stint in his career, seems to have settled well at Sporting in Portugal. With those two in better shape, expect Costa Rica to be more menacing in their forward forays.

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Costa Rica preview: Group Fixtures:

Saturday, June 4

Costa Rica vs. Paraguay, Orlando, FL, 5pm ET; FOX, Univision, Univision Deportes, FOX Sports Go, FOX Soccer 2GO and fuboTV (free trial)

Tuesday, June 7

USA vs. Costa Rica, Chicago, IL, 8pm ET; FOX Sports 1, UniMas, Univision Deportes, FOX Sports Go, FOX Soccer 2GO and fuboTV (free trial)

Saturday, June 11

Colombia vs. Costa Rica, Houston, TX, 9pm ET; FOX Sports 2, Univision, Univision Deportes, FOX Sports Go, FOX Soccer 2GO and fuboTV (free trial)

SEE MORE: See the complete Copa America schedule including quarter-finals, semi-finals and final

Costa Rica preview: Key Player:

Keylor Navas – It was a shame to see Navas used as a pawn in Real Madrid’s desperate efforts to land David de Gea last summer, as the ‘keeper is a tremendous player in his own right. And the 29-year-old has proven so this term, cementing his status as one of the very best goalkeepers on the planet.

With Costa Rica it’s likely he’ll have a lot more work to do than he does with Los Blancos, but Navas is a stopper who always seems to be at his best when active. His remarkable ability to keep efforts out has improved Real’s defence hugely this term and he’ll need to perform similar heroics if Costa Rica are to make it into the knockout stages.

Costa Rica preview: Verdict:

Group Stage Elimination – While the United States and Colombia would have been far from pleased to draw Los Ticos, they should each be too strong for this determined group of players. They certainly have the qualities to spring a shock, but in a pool which is full of quality, they don’t quite measure up to the aforementioned duo.

Costa Rica home jersey

costa-rica-home-jersey-copa-america

Costa Rica will wear a limited edition jersey to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Copa America. With their first invitation to the tournament in 1997, Los Ticos will make their fifth appearance in 2016.

Find out how to order the Costa Rica home jersey today.

Costa Rica away jersey

costa-rica-away-jersey-copa-america

Costa Rica will wear a limited edition jersey to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Copa America. With their first invitation to the tournament in 1997, Los Ticos will make their fifth appearance in 2016.

Find out how to order the Costa Rica away jersey today.

Read all of the Copa America team previews

• Argentina team preview
• Bolivia team preview
• Brazil team preview
• Chile team preview
• Colombia team preview
• Costa Rica team preview
• Ecuador team preview
• Haiti team preview
• Jamaica team preview
• Mexico team preview
• Panama team preview
• Paraguay team preview
• Peru team preview
• United States team preview
• Uruguay team preview
• Venezuela team preview

If you have any questions about the Costa Rica preview, let us know in the comments section below.

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