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Costa Rica and Trinidad & Tobago advance to Egypt '09
by Paul Kennedy, March 12th, 2009 7AM



[CONCACAF UNDER-20 CHAMPIONSHIP] Costa Rica and Trinidad & Tobago will join the USA and Honduras as the Concacaf representatives at the 2009 Under-20 World Cup. The Ticos won Group B with a 2-1 victory over Canada on Wednesday. Host T&T will face the USA in Friday's semifinals after tying Mexico, 2-2, to finish second and qualify for the U-20 finals for the first time since 1991.

Marcos Urena scored in the 72nd minute to give Costa Rica the victory over Canada and its second straight trip to the U-20 World Cup.

With the loss, Canada's string of four straight appearances in the U-20 finals came to an end.

The Costa Rica-Canada result clinched Trinidad's berth in the semifinals against the USA. It rallied with second-half goals by Juma Clarence and Uriah Bentick to tie Mexico.

In an embarrassing setback for the Mexican national team program, the Tri finished with only one point in three games.

Mexico was playing less than month after Juan Carlos Chavez replaced Jesus "Chucho" Ramirez as coach. In 2005, Ramirez led Mexico to the U-17 World Cup title, the first world championship at the youth level for a Concacaf team. Ramirez, the interim national team coach in 2008, left the Mexico program in February to coach Club America.


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