News / Americas

    Friday World Cup Winners: Costa Rica, France, Ecuador

    Costa Rica's forward Bryan Ruiz celebrates after scoring his team's first goal during a Group D match between Italy and Costa Rica at the Pernambuco Arena in Recife during the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, June 20, 2014.
    Costa Rica's forward Bryan Ruiz celebrates after scoring his team's first goal during a Group D match between Italy and Costa Rica at the Pernambuco Arena in Recife during the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, June 20, 2014.
    Mike Richman
    Costa Rica qualified for the World Cup's round of 16 with a 1-0 upset of Italy Friday, while France virtually assured itself of a spot in that round by dominating Switzerland, 5-2.

    Costa Rica's win ruined England's chances of reaching the round of 16, also known as the knockout round. The last time England failed to qualify for that stage of the World Cup was 1958.

    England, the world's 10th-ranked team according to FIFA, has suffered 2-1 losses to both Italy and Uruguay.

    In Friday's Group D match in Recife, Costa Rica's Bryan Ruiz scored on a header just before halftime. Junior Diaz supplied the cross from the left, and Ruiz headed the ball onto the underside of the crossbar and over the line to beat goalie Gianluigi Buffon.

    Fans of Costa Rica danced in the sunshine at Pernambuco Arena after their team's second victory.

    A 'beautiful' match

    "We kept up our heads; it was a beautiful match," Costa Rica's coach Jorge Luis Pinto said. "The people of Costa Rica deserve this. They supported the team and me. This was for them."

    The last team to keep Italy from scoring at the World Cup was France in 1998. Italy then scored in 15 straight World Cup games before Friday's loss, after which Italy's coach, Cesare Prandelli, tried to remain positive.

    "Right now, I don't think we need to be negative," he said. "We need to think about recovering our energies because we have another game in a few days' time. We play against Uruguay, and whether we qualify depends on that."

    Costa Rica leads Group D with six points, followed by Italy and Uruguay with three each. Uruguay and Italy play each other on Tuesday in their final group match, which will decide which team advances to the knockout round along with Costa Rica.

    In Group E play Friday in Salvador, France cruised to a 5-0 lead and held on for its three-goal win over Switzerland, the world's 6th-ranked team.

    France overwhelms Swiss in first half

    France's Olivier Giroud and Blasie Matuidi scored a minute apart in the first half, and Mathieu Valbuena made it 3-0 after a nifty pass by Giroud. The French outshot Switzerland in the first half, 11-4. Karim Benzema of France made up for a penalty miss in the first half with a goal in the 67th minute, then created Moussa Sissoko's score six minutes later.

    "It was a great day for us," France's coach Didier Deschamps said. "We were 5-0 up against a good Swiss team after 75 minutes, and we really had a lot of pressure in midfield. There were a few turning points in the game, but to be able to reach 3-0 at halftime really helps. At 2-0, opponents can still turn things round, but 3-0 makes a difference. We have to continue in the same vein. We have now scored eight goals and have been very effective; there's no doubt about that."RFE

    France leads Group E with six points, while Ecuador and Switzerland trail with three points each.

    In Friday's last game, Ecuador beat Honduras, 2-1, in Curitiba. Honduras took the lead in the 31st minute with its first World Cup goal in 32 years; but, Ecuador's Enner Valencia responded with two goals, including the game-winner in the 65th minute.

    The win kept Ecuador in contention for the knockout round. Ecuador and France clash on Wednesday in their last group game.

    There are two Group F matches on Saturday. Argentina, which leads that group with three points, takes on Iran and Nigeria faces Bosnia-Herzegovina. Germany, which is tied with the United States atop Group G with three points, battles Ghana.

    Some information for this report comes from AP, AFP and Reuters.

    You May Like

    Native Americans Ask: What About Our Water Supply?

    They say they have been facing a dangerous water contaminant for decades - uranium – but the problem has received far less attention than water contamination by lead in Flint, Michigan

    Pakistan's President Urges Nation Not to Celebrate Valentine's Day

    Mamnoon Hussain criticizes Valentine's Day, which falls on Sunday this year, as a Western import that threatens to undermine the Islamic values of Pakistan

    Mother of IS Supporter: Son Was Peaceful, 'Role Model'

    Somali-American Abdirizak Mohamed Warsame pleaded guilty Thursday to charges of conspiring to provide material support to Islamic State militants

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    New Technology Aims to Bring Election Transparency to Ugandai
    X
    Serginho Roosblad
    February 12, 2016 9:29 PM
    A team of recent graduates from Uganda’s Makerere University has created a mobile application designed to help monitor elections and expose possible rigging. The developers say the app, called E-Poll, will make Uganda's democratic process fairer. From Kampala, VOA's Serginho Roosblad reports.
    Video

    Video New Technology Aims to Bring Election Transparency to Uganda

    A team of recent graduates from Uganda’s Makerere University has created a mobile application designed to help monitor elections and expose possible rigging. The developers say the app, called E-Poll, will make Uganda's democratic process fairer. From Kampala, VOA's Serginho Roosblad reports.
    Video

    Video Refugees in Kenya Vie to Compete in Rio Olympics

    In Kenya, refugees from other African nations are training at a special camp and competing for a limited number of slots in this year's Rio Olympics under the flag of the International Olympic Committee (IOC). As Lenny Ruvaga reports from Ngong, this is a first in Olympic history.
    Video

    Video Gateway to Mecca: Historical Old Jeddah

    Local leader Sami Nawar's family has been in the Old City of Jeddah for hundreds of years and takes us on a tour of this ancient route to Mecca, also believed to be the final resting place of Adam's wife, Eve.
    Video

    Video Two-thirds of World Faces Water Shortage

    Four billion people — or two out of every three on the planet — do not have enough water to meet their basic needs. That is far greater than previously thought, according to a new study that presents a more accurate picture of the problem. As VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports, the findings will help policymakers and the public craft solutions to address the threat.
    Video

    Video As Refugees Perish, Greek Graveyards Fill

    Aid workers on the Greek island of Lesbos say they are struggling to bury the increasing number of bodies of refugees that have been recovered or washed up ashore in recent months.  The graveyards are all full, they say, yet as tens of thousands of people clamor to get out of Syria, it is clear refugees will still be coming in record numbers. For VOA, Hamada Elrasam reports from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video Russia Bristles at NATO Expansion in E. Europe

    Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is meeting Friday with the head of NATO after the Western military alliance and the United States announced plans for the biggest military build-up in Europe since the Cold War. Russia has called NATO's moves a threat to stability in Europe. But NATO says the troop rotations and equipment are aimed at reassuring allies concerned about Russia as VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video To Fight Zika, Scientists Target Mosquitoes

    Mosquitoes strike again. The Zika virus outbreak is just the latest headline-grabbing epidemic carried by these biting pests, but researchers are fighting back with new ways to control them. VOA's Steve Baragona takes a look.
    Video

    Video Mosul Refugees Talk About Life Under IS

    A top U.S. intelligence official told Congress this week that a planned Iraqi-led operation to re-take the city of Mosul from Islamic State militants is unlikely to take place this year. IS took over the city in June 2014, and for the past year and a half, Mosul residents have been held captive under its rule. VOA's Zana Omar talked to some families who managed to escape. Bronwyn Benito narrates his report.
    Video

    Video Scientists Make Progress Toward Better Diabetes Treatment, Cure

    Scientists at two of the top U.S. universities say they have made significant advances in their quest to find a more efficient treatment for diabetes and eventually a cure. According to the International Diabetes Federation, the disease affects more than 370 million people worldwide. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video NATO to Target Migrant Smugglers

    NATO has announced plans to send warships to the Aegean Sea to target migrant smugglers in the alliance's most direct intervention so far since a wave of people began trying to reach European shores.
    Video

    Video Used Books Get a New Life on the Streets of Lagos

    Used booksellers are importing books from abroad and selling them on the streets of Africa's largest city. What‘s popular with readers may surprise you. Chris Stein reports from Lagos.
    Video

    Video After NH Primaries All Eyes on South Carolina

    After Tuesday's primary in New Hampshire, US presidential candidates swiftly turned to the next election coming up in South Carolina. The so-called “first-in-the-South” poll may help further narrow down the field of candidates. Zlatica Hoke reports.
    Video

    Video Smartphone Helps Grow Vegetables

    One day, you may be using your smartphone to grow your vegetables. A Taipei-based company has developed a farm cube — a small, enclosed ecosystem designed to grow plants indoors. The environment inside is automatically adjusted by the cube, but it can also be controlled through an app. VOA's Deborah Block has more on the gardening system.
    Video

    Video Exhibit Turns da Vinci’s Drawings Into Real Objects

    In addition to being a successful artist, Renaissance genius Leonardo da Vinci designed many practical machines, some of which are still in use today, although in different forms. But a number of his projects were never realized — until today. VOA’s George Putic reports.

    More Americas News

    Haitian Lawmakers Choose Jocelerme Privert as Interim President

    Privert said after the vote he hopes to lead a government that will 'foster confidence within all sectors of society'

    Mexico Accuses Prison Officials of Homicide after Brutal Riot

    Warden, two others detained following one of deadliest prison riots in Mexico's history last week; ‘Who is directly responsible? ... The director of the penitentiary,’ state prosecutor says

    Pope Tells Mexican Leaders to Provide 'True Justice'

    Pontiff warns nation's president, lawmakers against permitting privilege for an elite class at the expense of the rest of society

    More than 5,000 Pregnant Colombian Women Infected With Zika Virus

    Total number of people diagnosed in Colombia has reached 31,555, the National Health Institute says in its Epidemiology Bulletin, among them 5,013 pregnant women

    Pope-Patriarch Meeting Seen by Russians as Significant

    Meeting in Havana on Friday between Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill was the first between the two church's leaders

    The Internet Comes to Cuba ... Slowly

    Smartphones prevalent, but only to make or receive calls, as mobile Internet access severely limited to certain areas; restriction has its charms, some say