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Global Nov 14, 2016

USMNT seeks bounce-back win vs. Costa Rica on Tuesday night

CHICAGO (Via U.S. Soccer) – The U.S. Men’s National Team looks to bounce back from Friday’s 2-1 defeat to Mexico with a visit to Costa Rica on Matchday 2 of the Final Round of 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifying. The MNT takes on Los Ticos at Estadio Nacional de Costa Rica in San Jose on Tuesday at 9 p.m. ET on beIN Sports and NBC Universo.

The sides are an even 14-14-6 in the all-time series, but Costa Rica has dominated at home, holding the USA to an 0-8-1 record in the team’s World Cup Qualifying visits. The most recent meeting came this past summer, when the MNT defeated Los Ticos 4-0 during the Group Stage of Copa America Centenario on June 7 in Chicago. The win was the largest margin of victory by either team during the course of the 34-match series.

+Read: U.S. U-17 MNT blanks Jamaica 4-0 in second training camp friendly

U.S. ROSTER BY POSITION (Club; WCQ Caps/Goals)
GOALKEEPERS (3):
Brad Guzan (Middlesbrough; 12/0), Ethan Horvath (Molde; 0/0), William Yarbrough (Club Leon; 0/0)
DEFENDERS (9):
Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City; 9/1), Steve Birnbaum (D.C. United; 2/0), John Brooks (Hertha Berlin; 1/0), Cameron Carter-Vickers (Tottenham Hotspur; 0/0), Timmy Chandler (Eintracht Frankfurt; 2/0), Omar Gonzalez (Pachuca; 11/0), Fabian Johnson (Borussia Moenchengladbach; 14/1), Michael Orozco (Club Tijuana; 6/1), DeAndre Yedlin (Newcastle United; 5/0)
MIDFIELDERS (9):
Alejandro Bedoya (Philadelphia Union; 6/0), Michael Bradley (Toronto FC; 30/5), Lynden Gooch (Sunderland; 0/0), Julian Green (Bayern Munich; 0/0), Jermaine Jones (Colorado Rapids; 15/0), Sacha Kljestan (New York Red Bulls; 17/2), Christian Pulisic (Borussia Dortmund; 4/2), Caleb Stanko (FC Vaduz; 1/0), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City; 14/3)
FORWARDS (4): Jozy Altidore (Toronto FC; 32/16), Alan Gordon (LA Galaxy; 1/0), Aron Johannsson (Werder Bremen; 3/1), Bobby Wood (Hamburg; 7/3)

+Read: USMNT falls 2-1 to Mexico in final round of World Cup Qualifying

STORYLINES:
GUZAN IN GOAL AGAINST COSTA RICA

Veteran U.S. goalkeeper Brad Guzan will guard the net for Tuesday’s match at Costa Rica. Guzan has had a banner year at the international level, backstopping the MNT to a fourth-place finish at Copa America Centenario and going on to earn an 8-2-0 record in 2016. With 52 caps to his name, the Middlesbrough ‘keeper has also done well in World Cup Qualifying, earning an 8-1-2 all-time mark in his 12 all-time appearances.

He entered in the 40th minute of the U.S. MNT’s 2-1 defeat to Mexico on Friday after starter Tim Howard suffered an injury to his right adductor while taking a routine goal kick in the first half. Howard returned to the Colorado Rapids for further evaluation,

A TOUGH PLACE TO PLAY
Away matches in Costa Rica have proven to be difficult for the MNT. The USA is 0-8-1 all-time in World Cup Qualifying matches on Costa Rican soil, with the only draw coming in the team’s first visit, a 1-1 deadlock on May 26, 1985 in Alajuela. The next seven defeats in Costa Rica came at the intimidating Estadio Saprissa, while the MNT’s last visit to San Jose was its first to the new Estadio Nacional, where Tuesday’s match will also take place.

GAINING ROAD POINTS
Since CONCACAF adopted the current qualifying format for the 1998 FIFA World Cup, an average of 15.6 points have been needed in order for teams to book an automatic place in the final tournament. Part of getting to that magic number involves finding ways to pick up points on the road, something the U.S. has done with some success in each qualifying campaign since. See below the MNT’s final round record going back to 1998 qualifying.

Away Final Round World Cup Qualifying Points

Year

Points

Record

Away Points Gained

1998

6

1-1-3

Canada (3), Mexico, El Salvador, Jamaica (1 each)

2002

5

1-2-2

Honduras (3), Jamaica, Trinidad & Tobago (1 each)

2006

7

2-2-1

Trinidad & Tobago, Panama (3 each), Guatemala (1)

2010

7

2-2-1

Trinidad & Tobago, Honduras (3 each), El Salvador (1)

2014

7

2-2-1

Jamaica, Panama (3 each), Mexico (1)

USA-COSTA RICA NOTES

  • The two teams have an even 14-14-6 record against each other all-time.
  • The USA is 6-9-2 all-time against Costa Rica in World Cup Qualifying and 0-8-1 in away matches.
  • The lone U.S. point on Costa Rican soil came in the MNT’s first visit, a 1-1 draw on May 26, 1985.
  • The USA won the last meeting between the two sides, earning a 4-0 victory against Los Ticosduring the Group Stage of Copa America Centenario on June 7, 2016 in Chicago.

MNT IN 2018 FIFA WORLD CUP QUALIFYING

  • The MNT advanced to the Final Round, also known as the “Hex” by going 4-1-1 (13 points) to finish first in a Semifinal Round group that also Trinidad & Tobago, Guatemala and St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
  • The MNT defeated St. Vincent and the Grenadines 6-1 (Nov. 13), drew 0-0 at Trinidad & Tobago (Nov. 17) and lost 2-0 at Guatemala (March 26), before defeating Guatemala 4-0 (March 30), St. Vincent and the Grenadines 6-0 (Sept. 2) and Trinidad & Tobago 4-0 (Sept. 6)
  • Jurgen Klinsmann has utilized 32 different players during the course of the team’s first seven World Cup Qualifying matches.
  • Jozy Altidore leads the team in scoring during 2018 World Cup qualifying with six goals in seven matches.
  • CAUTION WATCH: With their next yellow cards, Matt Besler, John Brooks, Timmy Chandler and Jermaine Jones will serve a one-game suspension.

USA ROSTER NOTES:

  • A total of 14 players have been part of a U.S. World Cup roster, while 21 have previous World Cup Qualifying experience.
  • The 25 players ply their trade in seven different countries: USA (7), Germany (7), England (4), Mexico (3), Canada (2), Norway (1), Liechtenstein (1).
  • 16 players on the roster have previously played against Costa Rica, while 11 have faced Los Ticos in World Cup Qualifying.
  • Nine players have taken part in a World Cup qualifier on Costa Rican soil: Jozy Altidore, Matt Besler, Michael Bradley, Omar Gonzalez, Aron Johannsson, Fabian Johnson, Jermaine Jones, Michael Orozco and Graham Zusi.
  • Four players have scored against Costa Rica. Bradley tallied in a 2-2 World Cup Qualifying draw against Los Ticos on Oct. 14, 2009, while Jones, Zusi and Bobby Wood all tallied in the MNT’s 4-0 win during the Group Stage of Copa America Centenario.
  • Tim Howard was withdrawn from Friday’s 2-1 loss to Mexico in the 40th minute after injuring himself on a goal kick. Howard was diagnosed with a right adductor strain and did not travel with the team to Costa Rica.
  • Bradley leads all cap-winners on the roster with 125 all-time appearances.
  • Jozy Altidore’s 32 World Cup Qualifying appearances are the most on the current roster and fifth most all-time for the USA. With his next appearance, Altidore will tie Howard and DaMarcus Beasley for third on the all-time list.
  • Tallying three times during the MNT’s two World Cup Qualifying matches in September, Altidore is the USA’s all-time leader in WCQ goals with 16. Altidore also sits third on the MNT’s all-time goal scoring list with 37 total.
  • Bobby Wood’s 49th minute strike against Mexico was the eighth of his international career, fourth of 2016 and fourth of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifying cycle.
  • Altidore and Wood have combined for 11 goals in the seven matches they have started up front together.
  • Defender John Brooks made his World Cup Qualifying debut for the USA in the 2-1 defeat to Mexico.
  • Four players hail from Champions League clubs on two different continents. Christian Pulisic (Borussia Dortmund) and Fabian Johnson (Borussia Moenchengladbach) are carrying the flag in the UEFA Champions League, while Sacha Kljestan (New York Red Bulls) and Omar Gonzalez (Pachuca) have their clubs in the quarterfinals of the CONCACAF Champions League.
  • Forward Aron Johannsson makes his first MNT camp appearance since coming off the bench in the USA’s 4-1 defeat to Brazil on Sept. 8, 2015, in Foxborough, Mass.
  • Carter-Vickers receives his first call-up to the senior MNT. The 18-year-old Tottenham Hotspur defender was part of the U.S. squad at the 2015 FIFA U-20 World Cup in New Zealand.
  • With his next assist, Bradley will tie Cobi Jones for second on the MNT’s all-time assist list (21). Landon Donovan holds the record with 58.

COSTA RICA ROSTER:
GOALKEEPERS: Keylor Navas (Real Madrid), Patrick Pemberton (Alajuelense), Esteban Alvarado (Trabzonspor)

DEFENDERS: Bryan Oviedo (Everton), Kendall Waston (Vancouver Whitecaps), Ronald Matarrita (New York City FC), Umaña (Alajuelense), Johnny Acosta (Herediano), Jose Salvatierra (Alajuelense), Leonardo Gonzalez (Herediano), Allan Miranda (Herediano)

MIDFIELDERS: Celso Borges (Deportivo de La Coruña), Christian Bolaños (Vancouver Whitecaps), Rodney Wallace (Sport Recife), Johan Venegas (Montreal Impact), Randall Azofeifa (Herediano), Yeltsin Tejeda (Lausanne), David Guzman (Saprissa), Pablo Salazar (Herediano)

FORWARDS: Bryan Ruiz (Sporting Lisbon), Joel Campbell (Sporting Lisbon), Marco Ureña (Brondby), Ariel Rodriguez (Bangkok Glass)

COSTA RICA NOTES

  • Costa Rica used goals from Cristian Bolaños and Ronald Matarrita to begin the Final Round of World Cup Qualifying with a 2-0 win at Trinidad & Tobago on Friday, Nov. 11.
  • Los Ticos made two changes to the roster that faced T&T on Friday. Cristian Gamboa (suspension) and Francisco Calvo (injury) have been replaced by defenders Leonardo Gonzalez and Allan Miranda.
  • Costa Rica eased to the Final Round of World Cup Qualifying, going 5-0-1 in a Semifinal Round group that featured Panama, Haiti and Jamaica.
  • Costa Rica Semifinal Round Results: 1-0 win vs. Haiti (Nov. 13), 2-1 win at Panama (Nov. 17), 1-1 draw at Jamaica (March 25), 3-0 win vs. Jamaica (March 29), 1-0 win at Haiti (Sept. 2), 3-1 win vs. Panama (Sept. 6).
  • Costa Rica is managed by Oscar Ramirez. The former national team defender has a
  • 2-4-2 record since taking over in August 2015.
  • A total of 10 players on the Costa Rica roster took part in the side’s 4-0 loss to the USA in Copa America Centenario: Johnny Acosta, Celso Borges, Joel Campbell, Ronald Matarrita, Patrick Pemberton, Bryan Ruiz, Yeltsin Tejeda, Marco Ureña
  • Four players on the Costa Rica roster play in Major League Soccer: Cristian Bolaños (Vancouver Whitecaps FC), Ronald Matarrita (New York City FC), Johan Venegas (Montreal Impact), Kendall Waston (Vancouver Whitecaps FC).
  • CAUTION WATCH: With their next yellow card, Marcos Urena, Ronald Matarrita, Joel Campbell or Bryan Ruiz will serve a one-game suspension.

CONCACAF Final Round World Cup Qualifying Standings

Team

GP

W

L

D

Pts.

GF

GA

GD

Costa Rica

1

1

0

0

3

2

0

2

Mexico

1

1

0

0

3

2

1

1

Panama

1

1

0

0

3

1

0

1

USA

1

0

1

0

0

1

2

-1

Honduras

1

0

1

0

0

0

1

-1

Trinidad & Tobago

1

0

1

0

0

0

2

-2

SCHEDULE/RESULTS:

Matchday 1 – Nov. 11, 2016 Matchday 2 – Nov. 15, 2016
Honduras 0, Panama 1 Honduras vs. Trinidad & Tobago
Trinidad & Tobago 0, Costa Rica 2 Panama vs. Mexico
USA 1, Mexico 2 Costa Rica vs. USA
Matchday 3 – March 24, 2017 Matchday 4 – March 28, 2017
USA vs. Honduras Panama vs. USA
Trinidad & Tobago vs. Panama Honduras vs. Costa Rica
Mexico vs. Costa Rica Trinidad & Tobago vs. Mexico
Matchday 5 – June 7/8, 2017 Matchday 6 – June 11/12, 2017
USA vs. Trinidad & Tobago Mexico vs. USA
Costa Rica vs. Panama Panama vs. Honduras
Mexico vs. Honduras Costa Rica vs. Trinidad & Tobago
Matchday 7 – Sept. 1, 2017 Matchday 8 – Sept 5, 2017
USA vs. Costa Rica Honduras vs. USA
Mexico vs. Panama Panama vs. Trinidad & Tobago
Trinidad & Tobago vs. Honduras Costa Rica vs. Mexico
Matchday 9 – Oct. 6, 2017 Matchday 10 – Oct. 10, 2017
USA vs. Panama Trinidad & Tobago vs. USA
Costa Rica vs. Honduras Panama vs. Costa Rica
Mexico vs. Trinidad & Tobago Honduras vs. Mexico

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