Copa America 2024: Costa Rica beats Paraguay but exits as Colombia, Brazil advance

Costa Rica beat Paraguay 2-1 in its final Copa America Group D match on Tuesday but failed to move into the quarter-finals after finishing third following Brazil’s 1-1 draw with Colombia.

Colombia finished as group winners with seven points while Brazil also advanced as runners-up with five. Costa Rica returns home with four points while Paraguay exits after three losses.

As it happened: Costa Rica vs Paraguay highlights, Copa America 2024

Costa Rica needed results to go its way along with a big swing in goal difference to qualify and it wasted no time getting on the board when skipper Francisco Calvo and Josimar Alcocer made it 2-0 inside seven minutes.

Calvo headed home from the edge of the six-yard box in the third minute while 19-year-old Alcocer powered past several players before pulling the trigger from well outside the box to beat the keeper.

But Costa Rica’s hopes of qualifying dwindled 10 minutes into the second half when Mathias Villasanti dribbled into the box and set up Ramon Sosa, who blasted the ball into the top corner for his first goal for Paraguay.

Costa Rica nearly conceded again from a corner in added time but keeper Patrick Sequeira made a fingertip save to deny Paraguay an equaliser.

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