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Jul 2, 2024 11:17 pm

Costa Rica gets pair of early goals, edges Paraguay at Copa

Copa America, Costa Rica, Paraguay

Francisco Calvo and Josimar Alcocer scored goals in the first seven minutes of the match to help Costa Rica notch a 2-1 victory over Paraguay in Copa America Group D play on Tuesday night at Austin, Texas.

Costa Rica goalkeeper Patrick Sequeira made a hand save in the third minute of second-half stoppage time to protect the victory.

Costa Rica (1-1-1, 4 points) finished third in the group, one point behind Brazil. Paraguay came in last.

Calvo struck in the third minute and Alcocer tallied in the seventh for Costa Rica.

Ramon Sosa scored for Paraguay (0-3-0, 0 points), which was outscored 8-3 in pool play.

Paraguay had a chance to draw even near the end of the match after Kaku took a corner kick and sent it toward the goalmouth. The ball glanced off the head of Paraguay’s Fabian Balbuena and landed at the feet of teammate Angel Romero, who quickly kicked it, but Sequeira got his right fingers on the ball to stymie Paraguay.

Costa Rica took just two shots, and both went into the net.

Paraguay had 17 shots and placed six on target.

After being blanked in its first two Copa matches, Costa Rica quickly ended the drought with two early goals.

Joseph Mora set up the first goal with a left-footed cross into the box. Calvo was in great position and headed the ball into the net.

Four minutes later, Costa Rica made it 2-0 when Alcocer took a long right-footed shot that beat Paraguay goalkeeper Rodrigo Morinigo.

Paraguay displayed life in the second half and finally got on the board on Sosa’s goal in the 55th minute. Sosa ripped a right-footed blast into the upper right corner of the net.

Nine minutes later, Julio Enciso delivered a hard right-footer from outside the box, and Sequeira made the save.

Enciso also had a solid chance to score in the first half, but his long right-footed shot was saved by Sequeira.

–Field Level Media

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