I never expected Costa Rica to succeed in the World Cup. After all, they drawn in the one of the toughest groups with three former world champions and top 10 ranked teams -England, Uruguay and Italy.
They were a measly 28 ranked team in the world and compared to these three football superpowers had no star players, or many who are particularly known on the global stage.
They won just one of their six preparatory games which adds to the shock experienced by football fans all over at their performance. And as Robbie Fowler neatly summed up when asked how much money he would have placed on Costa Rica before the World Cup, he replied: "none".
THE KEY MEN
This is a team which has been driven by their coach, Jorge Luis Pinto into a well rounded unit capable of giving any team a run for their money on a good day. In particular, Keylor Navas, Joel Campbell and Bryan Ruiz have performed extraordinarily and have inspired a team which didn't dream big at an international level.
Navas has had an excellent season and has truly established himself as one of the top custodians plying their trade in Spain. Campbell was loaned out by Arsenal to Olympiacos and made a grand arrival to the international stage in a spectacular first leg performance against Manchester United and has grown from there.
But if Los Ticos have a true idol, it is Bryan Ruiz. A player who leads his team by example he is the one who inspires his team in times of adversity and deserves credity for the Costa Ricans performance.
A TEAM EFFORT
But it's not just specific players who have guided the team to the next round. The whole team has put in a Jose Mourinho-esque defensive display and have looked to Campbell for inspiration up front which he has duly provided to great effect.
Although Costa Rica may not advance further than the second round, they have been fun to watch and if they do go on, they will spring the shock of a generation and substantially change the footballing world.
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