- Costa Rica made their FIFA World Cup debut at Italy 1990
- Their first World Cup match took place 30 years ago today
- Los Ticos shocked Scotland en route to reaching the last 16
A country’s first FIFA World Cup™ appearance is always a momentous occasion and for Costa Rica, Italy 1990 will always live long in the memory. Pitted against Brazil, Sweden and Scotland in the group stage, not much was expected of Los Ticos at their tournament debut.
But Bora Milutinovic’s side, made up entirely of domestic-based players, went on to stun the watching world as they progressed to the Round of 16 against the odds.
Costa Rica returned to the World Cup knockout phase 24 years later at Brazil 2014, where they again saw off stern competition in the group stages, before going one better than 1990 by reaching the quarter-finals.