Costa Rica, Haiti collect opening victories in Gold Cup


Costa Rica, Haiti collect opening victories in Gold Cup

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

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San José , Costa Rica (AFP) — Costa Rica captain Celso Borges and Bryan Oviedo scored in the first 20 minutes and the Ticos routed visiting Nicaragua 4-0 on Sunday in their opening match of the Gold Cup football tournament.

The biennial showdown of Concacaf region (North American) nations saw a rare start outside the United States for Costa Rica, playing in the National Stadium at San Jose.

In another Group B match played there Sunday, Haiti edged Bermuda 2-1.

Oviedo opened the scoring for Costa Rica in the seventh minute and Borges followed in the 19th as the Ticos seized command early.

Elias Aguilar, a midfielder for South Korean side Jeju United, scored on a free kick in the first minute of first-half stoppage time to boost Costa Rica's edge to 3-0 at half-time.

Allan Cruz added the final tally in the 75th minute.

Costa Rica, who made a semi-final run in the 2017 Gold Cup, last reached the final in 2002 and last won the trophy in 1989.

Bermuda took a 1-0 half-time lead over Haiti on captain Dante Leverock's header in the second minute of first-half stoppage time. Leverock is a centre back for Irish side Sligo Rovers.

Frantzdy Pierrot, a striker for Belgian side Royal Excel Mouscron, scored in the 54th and 66th minutes in response to bring the Haitians victory.

The next Group B matches will be Thursday with Nicaragua against Haiti and Bermuda facing Costa Rica at Frisco, Texas.

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