World News – United States – Costa Rica and Panama meet in friendship defined by pandemic


The soccer teams of Costa Rica and Panama meet on Saturday in the first of two friendlies to prepare for the CONCACAF qualifiers ahead of the 2022 Men’s World Cup, in matches marked by the pandemic of Covid-19

The first match will take place on Saturday at 8 p.m. at the San José National Stadium, and the second will take place Tuesday at the same time and place

Costa Rica reach friendlies with team decimated by Covid-19, three of the country’s top division teams hit by epidemics

Tournament leader Alajuelense had four players called up to La Sele who had to be replaced after the team presented 11 cases of Covid-19

One of the affected is Bryan Ruiz, captain of the Tico team, who revealed on his social networks that he was one of 11 Alajuelense players infected with the coronavirus

Despite this, coach Rónald González managed to complete the squad with the arrival of defender Oscar Duarte, from Levante (Spain), the only legionary called up for the matches with Panama

« We are done and now we have to prepare for the game on Saturday We hope to get it right and give options to Professor González Panama has a new coach and these days we are going to see a bit of what ‘they do,’ veteran midfielder Marvin Angulo said

The Costa Rican players have had the chance to play in their home league since last May, while Panama have had no domestic competition since their football tournament was suspended in March due to the pandemic

However, Panamanian coach Thomas Christiansen is confident his team will enthusiastically make up for what they lack in physical preparation

« Panama and the national team are in a very good mood Physically we could be better, but if the desire is there we are sure to come out on the pitch and get a good result, » said Christiansen in an interview distributed by the Panamanian federation

Panama will participate in this first round, while Costa Rica have a place in the final phase of eight teams that will compete for the three direct places at the World Cup and one for the qualifiers with a representative of another continent

These friendlies also serve as preparation for the CONCACAF Gold Cup, to be held in 2021

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Costa Rica, Panama

News from the world – United States – Costa Rica and Panama meet in friendship defined by pandemic


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