Scotland failed to get a change of fortune with a change of venue for the last Group F game in the Under 20s World Cup. They ended the first half in front, thanks to a Mark Reynolds goal, the first time Scotland have been ahead in the tournament. However, Pablo Herrera got the equaliser in the second half and Los Ticos had to wait for the last kick of the game for Jonathon McDonald to score a great goal to win the three points. Scotland were backed by a massive support as the game kicked off at the Swangard Stadium, all hoping that their favourites would give them a victory to celebrate. They went home disappointed as Scotland failed to get to the second round yet again.
Mark Reynolds gets the opening goal
Scotland were more determined to get on the score-sheet early. Scotland put the Costa Rica under early pressure and a good header from Reynolds in the 6th minute hit the right hand post with Alfonsa Quesada in the Costa Rica goal left stranded. Pablo Herrera took a chance to redress the balance after Ryan O'Leary lost the ball on the half-way line. Herrera was off his mark quickly and his snap shot flew past Scott Fox' right hand post to safety. On the 15 minute mark, Fox was called into action as he move quickly to push a great header from Jonathan McDonald low to the right hand post. Mark Reynolds finally got a goal to open the scoring for Scotland. Scotland were playing the ball around confidently across the park and looking for some space to open up. On the 18th minute, with the ball on the left, Callum Elliot calmly backheeled Michael McGlinchey's ball to Reynolds as he strode into the box before he sent the ball through Quesada legs. Scotland were playing with more confidence and were able to get players back when Costa Rica moved towards goal. Overall Scotland seemed able to cope better in the first half of the game. Cuthbert was lucky not to have a penalty awarded against him as he tangled with McDonald in the box in the 32nd minute. Thankfully the linesman was in a good position and ignored the screams for an award from the crowd. Fox was giving his defenders confidence with his safe handling of the balls that came his way. Scotland had the upper hand as the clock tick down to half time. Graham Dorrans sent in a fierce shot after a header on from Reynolds which was save by Quesada. Herrera nearly scored a fine goal in the final minutes of the half as he was fed on the right hand side of Scotland's box. His fierce shot went past Fox but also past the keeper's right hand post for a bye kick.
The second half was more like Costa Rica's as they were the more positive side from the whistle. Fox was called into action more and he kept Scotland in the game on several occasions. within 5 minutes Fox had to be sharp as McDonald chested down a cross for Herrera. His shot was stopped by Fox' knees and they would be called into action again later in the game. The Costa Rican's were enjoying more possession as they searched fro the equaliser. Herrera duly deliver the goal in the 57th minute as the ball was miss-hit by both sides as it moved across the 18 yard line. Substitute Jean Solarzano was right in front of goal but sliced his shot right to Herrera who scored easily. Los Ticos kept the pressure on as they looked for a second as the clock found the hour mark. Solorzano drove down the left and as the retreating defender slipped he struck a fierce drive that Fox used his knees to block. Fox was by far the busier keeper in the second half and he showed that he could use his hands as well as his lower limbs in Scotland's cause. He managed to get a hand to a goal-bound effort from McDonald to push it onto the bar. Scotland looked more and more tired as the game went on and chances that did come their way did not overly trouble the Costa Ricans Scotland did have the ball in the net in the second half as Fletcher executed a perfect overhead kick but was adjudged to be offside. As time was running out for both sides, the game moved into a phase of end-to-end football. It always looked to be Costa Rica who were more dangerous as they headed for goal. And so it proved with the last kick of the game, and from a tight angle, that man McDonald drove the ball high into Scotland's net.
Scotland: Fox, Wallace, Cuthbert, Reynolds, McGlinchey, Elliot, Fletcher, Dorrans (Conroy 61m), O'Leary (Kenneth 65m), Considine, Lynch (Snodgrass 71m)
Subs not used: Kelly, McNeil, Cave-Brown, Lowing, Wallace, Conroy, Gilmour, Campbell,
Goal: Reynolds, Elliot
Yellow Cards: Dorrans
Costa Rica: Quesada, Dawson, Rodriguez (Fernandez 74), Cubero, Herrera, Borges, Elizondo (Solorzano 46m), McDonald, Ramos, Myrie, Waston (Camble 88m)
Subs not used: Esteban, Gomez, Jimenez, Cubero, Borges Perez Gonzalez O, Garcia, Gonzalez G
Goal: Herrera, McDonald
Yellow card: Watson
Ger Harley (ger@scottishfitba net)
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