NATAL, Brazil — Viewed generally as one of the world’s weaker football groups, CONCACAF doesn’t tend to have very high expectations on the international stage.
Other than Mexico, teams from the Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football are usually expected to bow out and let the big boys — think UEFA and CONMEBOL — do the heavy lifting.
However, the early goings of the 2014 FIFA World Cup have turned conventional wisdom on its head.
Through the first week of World Cup action in Brazil, CONCACAF’s four representatives have posted a combined record of 3-1-1.
Among the results came a few shockers in favor of CONCACAF, most notably Costa Rica’s 3-1 upset of two-time World Cup champion Uruguay.
Costa Rica still has a long road ahead to advance through Group D, as the side’s two remaining matches come against traditional powers England and Italy.
But even so, there’s no better way the Costa Ricans could have started their 2014 World Cup campaign.
The 3-1-1 record also included the United States’ 2-1 revenge victory over Ghana, and Mexico’s astonishing nil-nil draw with host Brazil.
The latter was a particularly impressive result, as the Mexican side became the first team from outside UEFA or CONMEBOL — Europe and South America — to steal a World Cup point from Brazil.For the complete article see the 06-20-2014 issue.
Click here to purchase an electronic version of the 06-20-2014 paper.
Share on Facebook