[Edit: The roster posted at EqualizerSoccer.com lists Fabiola Sanchez instead of Gabriela Alfaro. It is unclear whether that list or the list on Costa Rica’s website is more current, and thus correct.]
On Thursday, Costa Rica’s Women’s National Team released its roster for the September 1st friendly against the United States (2:30 p.m. EDT, live on NBC). Only half of the eighteen players traveling to Rochester were on Costa Rica’s roster for Olympic qualifying back in January, where the USA and Costa Rica met in the crucial qualifying, with the United States winning 3:0 on goals by Tobin Heath, Carli Lloyd, and Alex Morgan (USSoccer.com).
The most notable player not on the roster is team captain Shirley Cruz, who now plays for Paris Saint-Germain in France, after moving from Olympique Lyonnais over the summer. And, thus has a club commitment. Three other players who started against the USA during qualifying are also not on the roster: Karol Sanchez, Fabiola Sanchez (Martin Methodist), and Wendy Acosta (Virginia Commonwealth), who are all defenders.
Acosta’s teammate at VCU, Cristian Granados, is on Costa Rica’s roster for this match, so perhaps VCU requested that no more than one of its team’s player be selected for this friendly.
Costa Rica, who are currently ranked 4th in CONCACAF and 40th overall, have a strong chance of qualifying for the next Women’s World Cup, as there will be 3.5 open slots for CONCACAF not including host Canada’s automatic slot.
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COSTA RICA’S MATCH ROSTER
An asterisk (*) denotes that the player was on Costa Rica’s roster for Olympic qualifying.
Ericka Miranda (UCEM Alajuela)*
Nohelia Bermúdez (San Carlos)
Diana Saenz (University of South Florida)*
Mariam Ugalde (Saprissa)*
Daniela Cruz (University of West Florida)*
Noel Sanz (Chaparral High School; Temecula, California)
Gabriela Guillén (Creighton University)
Gabriela Alfaro (IMG Boltarieri)
Yesmi Rodríguez (Moravia)
Katherine Alvarado (Saprissa)*
Mariela Campos (UCEM Alajuela)*
Mariana Benavides (Flores)
Andreína Baltodano (Moravia)
Cristian Granados (Virginia Commonwealth)*
On the Costa Rican FA’s website, there is a slightly out-of-date roster for the team. Each hyperlinked name connects to a page with the player’s photo plus vital statistics (date of birth, height, age, et cetera).
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This match will be televised live via NBC on September 1st at 2:30 p.m. EDT.