CONCACAF squad pulls off the upset and France dazzles on ninth day | World Cup Day Nine Recap
Here is a recap of Day Nine at the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
COSTA RICA 1 ITALY 0
Costa Rica continued their Cinderella run on Friday by knocking off four-time World Cup champion Italy 1-0. The Ticos’ dagger came just a minute from halftime as Bryan Ruiz nodded a Junior Diaz cross past the outstretched arm of legendary Italian goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon. Up a goal, the Costa Rican defense held firm as the Italians appeared to be lacking ideas to crack the Ticos back four. The win sealed Costa Rica's place in the Round of 16 and eliminated former World Cup champion England in the process.
FRANCE 5 SWITZERLAND 2
France showed that they deserve to be considered one of the chief contenders for the World Cup with a dominating 5-2 victory over No. 6-seeded Switzerland. Olivier Giroud gave Les Bleus the lead in the 17th minute which Blaise Matuidi doubled just seconds later. Matheiu Valbuena gave the French a three goal lead heading into halftime that was stretched to four by Karim Benzema in the 67th minute. Moussa Sissoko completed the scoring for the French in the 73rd minute. The Swiss added a pair of goals in the closing minutes as Blerim Dzemaili and Granit Xhaka scored, but the deficit was too great to overcome.
ECUADOR 2 HONDURAS 1
Enner Valencia notched a brace as Ecuador erased an early deficit to defeat Honduras 2-1 and keep their dreams making the knockout round alive. A Carlo Costly goal in the 31st minute put the Catrachos ahead, but the lead lasted just four minutes before Valencia drew Ecuador level. Valencia completed his brace in the 65th minute by heading a free kick into the Honduran net for his seventh goal in his last six games for La Tri. Ecuador’s victory was the eighth time that a team has come back from a deficit to win at the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
The World Cup returns on Saturday with three matches. The day begins with Argentina taking on Iran Rica at 9:00 a.m. PT before Germany faces Ghana in a Group G clash at 12:00 p.m. PT. The action concludes with Nigeria vs. Bosnia-Herzegovina as both nations look to keep their World Cup dreams alive at 3:00 p.m. PT.