Archives for El Clasico

Barcelona vs. Real Madrid, El Clasico. What Does It Have to Do with Costa Rica?

Barcelona vs. Real Madrid, Real Madrid vs. Barcelona. No matter which team you put first, this is one of the most important soccer games in the world. Two of the biggest and richer teams in the world clash against each other to proof who is the best in the soccer field.

Last Saturday, April 2nd, both teams clashed on the field of the Camp Nou Stadium in Barcelona in what was the last Clasico of the 2015-2016 season for the Spanish Soccer, or Football, League. The game in itself is an exquisite dish for those who love soccer; it is estimated that the game was broadcasted live to over 600 million people worldwide.

Barcelona came to the game with a striking record of not having lost a game in the past 39 games they played in all competitions, whether it was La Liga, Copa del Rey or UEFA Champions League. They also came at the top of La Liga with a 10 point advantage over Real Madrid. Finally, they had won the last Clasico, in Madrid, with a 4-0 victory over Real Madrid.

Real Madrid came striving to save its honor and proof that Madrid, despite the bad year they have had in La Liga, and the humiliating lost against Barcelona at the las Clasico, is better that Barcelona.

The BBC (Bale, Benzema and Cristiano) in Real Madrid´s side was facing the MSN (Mesi, Suarez and Neymar) on the Barcelona side, and those who watch the game were not disappointed. Real Madrid came out of Barcelona with a 2-1 victory and is now 7 points behind the Blaugranas in La Liga.

But, why is the Spanish Clásico so important in Costa Rica when it is played over 5,000 miles away? Yes, the Clasico is that important in Costa Rica. The bars and restaurants in San José were packed on Saturday with people trying to watch the game, which was only televised in Costa Rica through satellite TV. People were even standing outside the bars looking through the windows or the door to be able to watch the game. But going back to answering our question, it is that important because in the first place, Costa Rica is a soccer loving country. But not only that, the main reason why the game was so important is because a Costa Rican player was on the field. Hard to believe? Yes, but 100% true.

Keylor Navas, the Costa Rica´s National Team Goalkeeper is now the starting keeper for Real Madrid and he was going to be playing the most important match in the world. It is usual to see players from Brazil, Argentina, Germany, Portugal and Spain playing this match, but not from Costa Rica. However, those who watch the game on Saturday were able to see him. Keylor Navas is the Costa Rican player who has made his way up to being a starter for Real Madrid and has become a security for his team.

Keylor was an important player in the game and his best play of the night came when he flew up in the air to barely touch a ball sent his way by Leo Messi in which would have been his 500th goal. Messi was getting ready to celebrate because the ball was going in, but it found the tip of Keylor “La Pantera” Navas and the ball was sent off to the corner kick. Messi was scoreless this game, so were Neymar and Suarez, so the MSN could not do any harm to Real Madrid thanks, in part, to Keylor´s performance. On the other side the BBC scored the 2 goals that gave the victory to Real Madrid.

While people continue to talk about the game, the Ticos feel proud to have one of their best man in the field. An example of hard work, dedication and never giving up. Thank you Keylor Navas for being an inspiration for our country and our children.

El Clásico | A Costa Rican Tradition

clasicoCosta Rica moves around a soccer ball. Other countries like the US have many season sports like basketball, baseball, and football; not so Costa Rica. Yes, many sports are played in the country but nothing stirs up passions like soccer does. A typical Costa Rica town will have a school, a catholic church, a park and a soccer field. Kids play it on the streets and in schools and the country comes to a halt when the National Team, La Sele, plays. Speaking of which, the world cup qualifiers will start on November 13th, so we will bring more info on that later.

But not only La Sele wakes up passions in Costa Rica. There is another very special game which also gets unlimited attention by the news and the ticos; el Clásico. This is the biggest game in Costa Rica. Saprissa and Alajuela clash in match like no other. Everyone talks about it, news and sports channels, newspapers and radio stations talk about the coming game for at least one week before and for a few days after. The game day congregates anywhere from 17,000 to 35,000 spectators, that means a packed stadium depending on the venue where they play.

Sunday November 8th, was the day for the second Clásico of the season. Saprissa and Alajuela came face to face at the National Stadium in La Sabana (the gem jewel of the tico soccer fans). Alajuela came in as the current leader of the season and Saprissa came in needing to win to calm down its fans and silence some negative comments due to the not so good season it is having.

The game was not the most excited, mostly due to the fact the many of the players will go to the National Team this week for the beginning of the World Cup qualifiers for Russia 2018, so they were watching out for injuries. Alajuela took the lead 1-0 in the second half and that was enough to win the game.

Once again Costa Rica was painted purple and white for Saprisa and red and black for Alajuela. Now the game is over and they will face each other again may be in the season play offs. If not, it will be until next season where the eternal rivals will face each other again. In the meantime the nation gets ready for the game against Haiti, and of course, we will bring you all the details of that one as well.

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