Costa Rica will trade tackle against Nigeria at National Stadium in San Jose, been the first of Los Ticos’ last two friendly matches before the start of the 2022 FIFA Men’s World Cup in Qatar, Abbeylivenetwork.com reports.
In Qatar, Costa Rica will not face any African opposition in the round-robin stage, having been grouped with Spain, Japan, and Germany.
But La Tricolor have resolved to test their wits and might against three-time African champions, the Super Eagles.
The Super Eagles will not be in Qatar after losing out on a World Cup ticket to eternal rivals Ghana in the final playoffs.
But pride will be at stake for the West Africans as they seek to pad their unpleasant record against North American teams.
Costa Rica have called up a 26-man squad for their clash against Nigeria, with Paris Saint-Germain goalkeeper Keylor Navas, who is ninth in the nation’s all-time appearance chart with 107 caps, headlining the team.
Defenders Bryan Oviedo, Ronald Matarrita and Daniel Chacon, who all ply their trade in the MLS, have also been included in the team, while Bryan Ruiz should captain the side on Thursday once again.
Campbell has also been named in the squad and will push for his 119th senior appearance for the national team, while he should be supported in attack by 22-year-old Anthony Contreras.
The Super Eagles arrived in San Jose, the capital of Costa Rica and the match venue, early Monday morning.
The Nigerian delegation comprised of, but not limited to, two coaches and 18 home-based players and have been lodged at Real Intercontinental Hotel, San Jose.
Several Nigeria Professional League stars have been called up to the squad, including the likes of Daniel Bameyi, Samuel Kalu, Mustapha Jibrin and national Under-23 goalkeeper Nathaniel Nwosu.
Costa Rica possible starting lineup:
Navas; Fuller, Duarte, Calvo, Oviedo; Borges, Ruiz, Bennette, Tejeda; Campbell, Contreras
Nigeria possible starting lineup:
Nwosu; Bameyi, Nwobodo, Ogbonda, Kalu; Nosiru, Akanni, Ohaka; Faleye, Edidiong, Garba
The San Jose friendly will be the first international match between Costa Rica and Nigeria.
Los Ticos, however, have a mixed record against African opposition. Costa Rica boast one win each over Cameroon and Tunisia but have suffered two defeats to South Africa.
By contrast, Nigeria have an ugly record against CONCACAF representatives.
The Super Eagles have lost three of six matches to Mexico, tasted defeat twice in three games against the United States, and have won just two of six games against Jamaica.
While the full-time result is largely unimportant, Costa Rica will head into Thursday seeking a morale-boosting result ahead of their World Cup opener. The Central Americans take on an inexperienced Nigerian side and we are backing them to come out victorious in front of their home crowd.