World Cup Live Streaming: Italy vs. Costa Rica Preview and Betting Odds
By James Patrick Quizon | June 20, 2014 6:30 PM EST
Costa Rica and Italy look to build something big from their impressive opening match victories over Uruguay and England when they face off against each other on Friday at the Arena Pernambuco starting at 1:00 pm local time (2:00 am in Australia)
Italy's national soccer player Mario Balotelli (L) and his coach Cesare Prandelli look on during a training session ahead of the 2014 World Cup at the Portobello training center in Mangaratiba June 11, 2014.
Costa Rica took advantage of a Uruguayan squad playing without superstar Luiz Suarez winning 3-1 last Saturday while Italy beat the now-eliminated England team, 2-1 in their own opener.
Los Ticos’ shocking victory over Uruguay puts them in contention in Group D and on the threshold of topping it if they manage another upset over the Italians.
It was in Italy in 1990 that Costa Rica made their first World Cup appearance and they made the most out of it by reaching the Round of 16. They failed to qualify in the next WC editions but returned in 2002 (South Korea/Japan) and 2006 (Germany), both times getting the boot in the group stage.
Meanwhile, the Azzuri’s pinpoint passing took care of business against England. They had a 93 per cent pass completion in that game and rated the highest ever since the 1996 World Cup, according to Independent.co.uk.
Rich in World Cup tradition, this is their 18th appearance in the biggest football tournament in the world.
They look to continue their good start with a renewed focus, particularly star Mario Balotelli.
"I hope this is Italy's World Cup, not Mario's," Balotelli declared to ESPNFC. "I'm not really interested in being compared with the big stars. In the end it's the squad that wins. I don't want to be a big star. I want to win the World Cup.
Both teams know how to attack and score; Costa Rica opened the tournament with three goals while Italy has not been held scoreless in a WC event since 1996.
Italy is a big favourite in the betting lines valued at 1.14 to win the match while the underdogs Costa Rica is at 5.2. In the three-way betting, Italy is at 1.53, Costa Rica is at 7.00 and a Draw is at 4.2.
To contact the editor, e-mail:
Most Popular Slideshows
- Typhoon Rammasun Claims 18 Lives in China, Incurs $4.32B Losses (PHOTOS)
- Ellen DeGeneres Caught Cheating with Mutual Friend Before Portia de Rossi’s Rehab – Reports [PHOTOS]
- Kate Middleton's Pregnancy Hearsays: Possible Evidence Revealed [PHOTOS]
- National Ice Cream Day: Most-Ordered Flavors and Toppings by Americans [See Photos]
Join the Conversation
- No Kevin Love to Cleveland, Andrew Wiggins to Stay with Cavaliers
- Jeremy Lin Only an ‘Expiring Contract’ in Los Angeles; Lakers Want Eric Bledsoe
- Jeremy Lin Demands More Playing Time From Lakers Next Season
- $300 Million at Stake for Floyd Mayweather vs. Manny Pacquiao Showdown
- Roger Federer is ‘The Greatest of All Time' - Novak Djokovic’s Coach Boris Becker
- Fresh Leak Hints iPhone 6 Price and Release Date; 4.7-Inches iPhone 6 Sapphire Display Scratched in Test; New Spigen Cases Out
- iPhone 6 2014 Release Date Very Soon as Apple Orders 120M New iPhones from Foxconn – Report
- Google Nexus 6 on Release Date Will Sport 2K Display Panel & Lower Price Tag – Report
- Motorola Moto G Vs. Xiaomi Mi3 – Low in Price, High -level Features
- FCC Approves Sony Xperia Z3 for U.S. Market
- Killer Xiaomi Mi4 at $369 Likely to Come With 5.0-Inch Display, Snapdragon 801 Processor, 3GB RAM and More
- End of Times Indicators: Japan’s Mount Fuji in ‘Critical State’ to Erupt, Could Affect At Least 1.2M People