[USA-COSTA RICA: Reaction] Reaction from Costa Rica following the USA's 1-0 win over the Ticos Friday night in a blizzard in Colorado was predictable and uniform: the game should have been halted.
Even Costa Rica President Laura Chinchilla expressed outrage, tweeting during the game, “Que horror!! Están degradando el deporte!!” (“What horror!! They’re degrading the sport!!')
The Costa Rican soccer federation (Fedefutbol) said an appeal to have the game replayed and have referee Joel Aguilar of El Salvador suspended had been sent to FIFA.
Fedefutbol vice president Jorge Hidalgo said his organization admitted to Costa Rican journalists that the chances of getting FIFA to overturn the result of a completed qualifier were slim.
"We understand it is complicated," he said, "but we feel we must protest."
Much of the criticism was directed at Aguilar, who kept the game going in the second half even as the snow piled up on the Dick's Sporting Goods Park field.
“It’s embarrassing for soccer and embarrassing for fair play," said Costa Rica coach Jorge Luis Pinto. "It’s disrespectful to FIFA, the fans, the players and spectacle."
"Outrageous!" We were forced to play in caveman conditions," was the headline in Al Dia.
"It was the only way they could beat us," the daily wrote. "The USA froze us in Denver. Why was the game allowed to go ahead?"
Snow was nothing new for many of the Costa Rican players. Eight starters played for clubs in northern climates, including four in Scandinavia.
“Honestly, it was robbery," said midfielder Cristian Bolanos, who plays for FC Copenhagen. "A disgrace. I’ve never played a game in these conditions. You couldn’t see the ball … if we had played without snow, we would have won, I am sure."