Recife: Celso Borges set the ball rolling, putting Costa Rica ahead in the penalty shoot-out that followed the 1-1 stalemate after regulation time on Sunday.
By the time Theofanis Gekas stepped up to take his shot, the Ticos led 4-3, with every player having converted. Facing Gekas was a former teammate in Keylor Navas.
Talking about the scenario to the Fifa website, Navas said: “We played together at Levante and I remembered what he used to do in training. I was confident he wasn’t going to change the way he takes his penalties, and in the end, I was able to keep it out.
“It’s a fantastic feeling. We are thrilled to bits. Thank God I was able to stop itů”
And after Michael Umana made full use of the advantage given by him, Navas suddenly found himself engulfed by his jubilant teammates.
Once it looked as if Jorge Luis Pinto’s side would be going through in normal time, Sokratis Papastathopoulos brought the Costa Ricans right back down to earth with a stoppage-time equaliser for the Greeks.
Costa Rica: Keylor Navas; Cristian Gamboa (Johnny Acosta, 77th), Oscar Duarte, Giancarlo Gonzalez, Michael Umana, Junior Diaz; Celso Borges, Yeltsin Tejeda (Jose Cubero, 66th), Christian Bolanos (Randall Brenes, 83rd); Bryan Ruiz, Joel Campbell.
Greece: Orestis Karnezis; Vasileios Torosidis, Konstantinos Manolas, Sokratis Papastathopoulos, Jose Cholevas; Ioannis Maniatis (Konstantinos Katsouranis, 78th), Georgios Karagounis, Andreas Samaris (Konstantinos Mitroglou, 58th), Lazaros Christodoulopoulos; Dimitrios Salpingidis (Theofanis Gekas, 69th), Georgios Samaras.
Man of the Match: Keylor Navas
Referee: Benjamin Williams (Australia)