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01:25, Nov 19 2016
RECIFE, Brazil - With his team down to 10 men for nearly an hour, Keylor Navas made sure Costa Ricas last line of defence held firm. The goalkeeper came through with a string of stops in regulation and extra time and then made the only save in a penalty shootout to send Costa Rica through to the World Cup quarterfinals on Sunday with a win over Greece. After Navas dived to his right to push out the effort by Theofanis Gekas, Costa Rica defender Michael Umana scored the decisive spot kick for a 5-3 win in the shootout, sending the team sprinting down the pitch to embrace its goalkeeper. The game had finished 1-1 following extra time, after Greece equalized in second-half injury time. "It was only a dream for us, a dream that became a reality," Navas said. "A dream that was dreamt by an entire country." Costa Rica will play one of the tournament favourites the Netherlands in the quarterfinals on Saturday in a surprising appearance in the last eight for the small country that has a quarter of the population of Brazils biggest city and which hardly anyone picked to even make it past the group stage. "To the entire people in Costa Rica, those at home and out on the streets, this is for you," Costa Ricas Colombian coach Jorge Luis Pinto said. "This is a people that love football and they deserve it. ... We will continue fighting. We will go on. We see beautiful things." The victory also delighted the majority of the just over 41,000 fans in Recife as the Brazilian locals shouted for Costa Rica throughout the game and often broke out into chants of "Ole, Ole, Ole, Ole, Ticos!" — using the common nickname for Costa Ricans. Greece was often booed. Costa Rica went ahead in the 52nd minute with a coolly taken goal by captain Bryan Ruiz, but the game changed when Oscar Duarte clumsily lunged at Greeces Jose Holebas in the 66th and was sent off with a second yellow card. Pouring forward, the Greeks did beat Navas in injury time when defender Sokratis Papastathopoulos smashed in a rebound to make the teams numerical advantage eventually pay. Yet Navas kept denying the Greeks through extra time and then, crucially, when he dived, threw up a hand and pushed Gekas spot-kick away at the end. "Obviously he has to be congratulated," Greece coach Fernando Santos said of Costa Ricas keeper. "If it werent for (him), the results would have been different." Santos was sent to the stands by Australian referee Ben Williams just before the penalties and said he watched the shootout on a television inside the stadium. "Sadness," he said of Greeces elimination and his last game in charge of the team. "Definitely sadness. Not much (else) goes through your mind at that time." The red card for Duarte changed the game — which Costa Rica had slowly begun to control — and Greece surged forward for most of the remainder of the match. But, with the exception of Papastathopoulos goal, they just couldnt get past Navas as shot after shot was blocked. Greece had 13 shots on target to Costa Ricas two. Navas smothered a volley from Dimitris Salpingidis from point-blank range in the first half. After the equalizer, he threw himself high to tip over a header from substitute Konstantinos Mitroglou that would have surely been the winner in the dying seconds of regulation time. He then made three crucial stops in extra time, when Costas Katsouranis, Lazaros Christodoulopoulos and Mitroglou were all denied. During the shootout, the Costa Rican squad knelt in a line. They then burst onto their feet to race over to Navas and smother him in a huddle when Umanas shot hit the net and Costa Rica made the last eight at the World Cup. "We will not stay on the quarterfinals," coach Pinto said. "Rest assured that we will not get eliminated there." ___ Lineups: Costa Rica: Keylor Navas; Giancarlo Gonzalez, Michael Umana, Oscar Duarte, Junior Diaz, Cristian Gamboa (Johnny Acosta, 77); Celso Borges, Christian Bolanos (Randall Brenes, 83), Yeltsin Tejeda (Jose Cubero, 66); Joel Campbell, Bryan Ruiz. Greece: Orestis Karnezis; Kostas Manolas, Vasileios Torosidis, Sokratis Papastathopoulos, Jose Holebas; Andreas Samaris (Konstantinos Mitroglou, 5, Lazaros Christodoulopoulos, Giorgos Karagounis, Giannis Maniatis (Costas Katsouranis, 7; Georgios Samaras, Dimitris Salpingidis (Theofanis Gekas, 69). <a href="http://www.cheapjerseyssell.us.com/">Cheap NFL Jerseys</a>. On Wednesday night, they showed that stellar defence and a little small ball can get the job done too. With pinch-runner Kevin Pillar aboard after Dioner Navarro opened the bottom of the ninth with a single, Anthony Gose dropped down an excellent bunt along the first-base line. <a href="http://www.cheapjerseyssell.us.com/">Cheap Jerseys USA</a>.28 mph. Logano will start on the front row next to Penske Ford teammate Brad Keselowski, who came in second Friday at 193.099. The Penske drivers swept the top two spots for the second straight race, reversing their qualifying finish in Phoenix a week ago. <a href="http://www.cheapjerseyssell.us.com/">http://www.cheapjerseyssell.us.com/</a>. It was the start of one nice night for the goalie and the Minnesota Wild. Backstrom made 33 saves in his first win of the season and the Wild defeated the Chicago Blackhawks 5-3 on Saturday in a rematch of their first-round playoff series. <a href="http://www.cheapjerseyssell.us.com/">Cheap NFL Jerseys Store</a>.Bekker was added Wednesday in exchange for allocation money after two seasons with Toronto. The native of Canada had 29 MLS appearances, including 16 starts. Hes also played in 13 games for the Canadian national team. <a href="http://www.cheapjerseyssell.us.com/">Cheap Authentic Jerseys Online</a>.com) - The collective hearts of Chicago Bulls fans sank on Friday night when Derrick Rose went down with a leg injury against the Cleveland Cavaliers.NEW ORLEANS - Pelicans coach Monty Williams says All-Star forward Anthony Davis has a mild groin strain and could play again as soon as Friday night against the Los Angeles Clippers.Davis, who was hurt in the third quarter of Wednesday nights 93-85 loss to Denver, had an MRI Thursday morning. The scan revealed a grade 1 adductor strain, an injury that causes soreness from being over-stretched but which does not necessarily limit muscle function.Hes walking around, doing some stuff — nothing to break a sweat — but hes walking around normally, so well see how he feels on Friday, Williams said. If he feels up to it, were going to play him his normal minutes.Davis, who has not spoken with media since his injury, has been playing about 36 minutes per game this season. He is third in the NBA in points per game (24.3), eighth in rebounds per game (10.4) and first in blocks per game (2.9).Against Denver, he crashed to the floor late in the third quarter after a midair collision with Kenneth Faried under the basket. He remained down several minutes and then limped to the locker room with the help of team medical staff.He returned for about 8 minutes in the fourth quarter, but Williams pulled him out for most of the final minute.The only way he was going to get back on the floor is if the doctors said he wasnt going to aggravate it moree, Williams said.dddddddddddd. But as I saw him getting up and down the floor, after a few minutes of playing, I didnt see the normal burst that we know A.D. brings every night.Williams said he will want to see that usual burst in pre-game warm-ups before putting Davis back in the lineup.Theres no need of putting him on the floor if he drags his leg, Williams said. I dont think that helps him at all and certainly prolongs the healing process.The Pelicans on Thursday were only 2 1/2 games out of the final playoff spot in the Western Conference with nearly half of the regular season left. They are also in the midst of what could be a pivotal stretch in which they play six of their next seven games at home, where they are 15-6.If Davis is held out against the Clippers, that would give him a minimum of four full days of rest before New Orleans following game on Monday night against Eastern Conference leader Atlanta.Generally, Williams errs on the side of giving hobbled players more rest.Ive been around for a little bit and I know when a guy really wants to play, but I also know theres a chance that if he plays and hurts himself it can hurt us going forward, Williams said. You always try to protect your guys. ... Its a tough decision. And those are the decisions I have to make to do whats best for him and our team. <a href="http://www.cheapjerseysnflchina.net/">Wholesale Jerseys</a> ' ' '
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