Spain-Costa Rica scoreline: La Roja beat Ticos on seven to take the lead in Group E after being sent off

Spain opened their World Cup season with an impressive 5-0 win over Costa Rica in Doha. La Roja announced themselves in Qatar with a masterful display against a struggling Ticos side as Ferran Torres scored twice.

The Spaniards took the lead after just 11 minutes through Dani Olmo and just 10 minutes later it was 2-0 when Marco Asensio converted from Jordi Alba’s ball. Torres scored his first penalty after Alba was fouled by Oscar Duarte and Luis Enrique Men took a 3-0 lead at the break.

Keylor Navas endured a terrible afternoon at Al Thumama Stadium and things got worse ten minutes into the second half when Torres struck again. Gavi added a fifth place with 15 minutes remaining with a wonderful finish from Alvaro Morata, who came on as a substitute from the bench, to become the youngest World Cup goalscorer since PelĂ© in 1958, but Costa Rica’s misery didn’t end there.

Substitute Carlos Soler added a sixth late for Spain as they took control of Group E in emphatic style, while Morata added a seventh for extra sparkle after an exchange with Olmo.

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Goals galore

The big question before the Spaniards started was where the goals would come from and Luis Enrique’s side responded with six different goalscorers. Dani Olmo, Marco Asensio, Ferran Torres (twice), Gavi, Carlos Soler and Alvaro Morata all featured. Many of the goals were also exceptional in terms of technique, with Gavi perhaps the best choice as he volleied home the youngest World Cup goalscorer since Pele.

damage control

Costa Rica have always been against and relied on a strong defense and now they know they really don’t have the pace in this World Cup. A rusty Navas failed to save his side as the Spaniards relentlessly bombarded the Los Ticos goal. It’s no longer a question of whether the Costa Ricans can compete in this group, it’s now a question of whether they can keep it respectable.

youthful glow

Enrique has bet heavily on youth in this Spain squad and has been rewarded with brilliant performances from the likes of Gavi, Pedri, Olmo and Torres to name a few. Sure they don’t have the same experience as some of their teammates like Jordi Alba, Cesar Azpilicueta and Sergio Busquets but their technical championship is among the most exciting in the world right now and it was a daunting feat for future opponents.

CONCACAF crisis?

Should Canada fail to beat Belgium, none of the CONCACAF representatives will have won in the opening round. The USMNT and Mexico have both drawn while Costa Rica was blown out here. The Red Devils are no easy task for the Canucks, but they are now the regional hope for a first World Cup win in Qatar.

Early favourites?

It’s probably too early to tell and maybe not the best game to draw any conclusions from, but Spain looked very good. If they can perform similarly against countries like Germany and Japan, they will look even more legitimate. The next duel with the Germans is huge after Hansi Flick’s men lost to Samurai Blue.


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