In a World Cup that has been filled to the brim with cup-sets, Greece and Costa Rica face eachother for a spot against the Dutch in the quarter finals. It’s the kind of last 16 tie that you’d never have dreamed of but that’s been the kind of World Cup we’ve had so far and we stand here with two sides who were favourites to finish bottom of their groups aiming for a last eight spot.
On the face of things, Costa Rica achieved more in getting a last 16 spot. A group with Italy, Uruguay and England looked to be a group of death, and to beat both Uruguay and Italy deserves tremendous credit, but in the cold light of day those performances aren’t as impressive as face value would have you believe.
They demolished Uruguay in the opening game although didn’t face him with Luis Suarez, where they were a different proposition for England and Italy, while they had the benefit of facing the Italians after their strapping encounter with England in Manaus in the sweltering heat of Recife, where a 5pm kick off suited them greatly; They also faced an experimental and deflated England side following their elimination.
Greece conceded earlier and were deservedly well put aside against Colombia but made plenty of chances on the break in a game they could well have put themselves back into with some luck and kept Japan at bay with 10 men for a good portion of their bore draw when forced on the defensive early; Look at their 2-1 win against Ivory Coast and one may think they snuck through with a last minute penalty but it would have been a Greek tragedy had they not won the game beforehand, such was the amount of chances they consistently made, and it was the Ivory Coast who had the shackles enforced upon them for most of the game.
This is likely to be a very tight game however, with Costa Rica having conceded just a Uruguay penalty but only scoring the once since their opener, and Greece being notoriously solid at the back when the time comes. Greece are fancied to sneak a very tight encounter where stakes should be kept small.
1 pt Greece to win by one goal (7/2 general)