Sports Desk, Jun 14 (EFE).- Joel Campbell’s goal in the 3rd minute would prove to be enough Tuesday for Costa Rica to prevail over New Zealand in the playoff for the last remaining berth in World Cup 2022.
New Zealand went on to dominate possession, even after being reduced to 10 men, but Ticos keeper Keylor Navas was excellent and Chris Wood’s equalizer late in the first half was disallowed after VAR detected a foul in the buildup.
Costa Rica, making their sixth World Cup appearance, will compete in Qatar as part of Group E, alongside Spain, Germany, and Japan.
Conceding early spurred the New Zealanders, especially Wood, who forced a double-save from Navas before bringing his team level with a goal in the 39th minute.
But the celebration among the New Zealand supporters who made the trip to Doha was cut short when the referee consulted VAR, which concluded that Matthew Garbett fouled Costa Rican defender Oscar Duarte and chalked off the goal.
Costa Rica coach Luis Fernando Suarez went with a five-man back line to start the second half and Navas remained sharp, denying Newcastle United’s Wood on two occasions and handling a dangerous shot from Elijah Just.
Kosta Barbarouses left New Zealand down a man by committing a flagrant foul in the 69th minute, not even 10 minutes after coming in as a sub. EFE dmm/dr