Where Did They Go? Learn About the Top Tico Five Playing Football in England

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    The Costa Rica News (TCRN) – The 2014 World Cup left no doubts on the skill of the Costa Rican football team.  With the Cup come and gone, many of the players have moved on to join new teams in other parts of the world.

    There are currently five Costa Rican football stars playing in England.  They all play with different clubs in various parts of the country: two in London, two in the country of Lancashire in the North West of the country, and one player in the Midlands part of England.

    Three of the players play in the Premier League and two in the Championship League.

    Naturally, the five Ticos may have a ‘culture shock’ especially regarding the weather, but the fantastic salaries they can earn will far outweigh such thoughts.  People in Britain often talk about this subject (both the weather and soccer player salaries), but the fact remains that it doesn’t stop them from going to the games week after week.

    Here is everything you could want to know about the five players and their teams in no particular order:

    1. Christian Gamboa – WBA Premier League
    •  24 years old.
    • Born in Liberia, Costa Rica.
    • Position: defender.
    • He joined WBA on August 5, 2014 for a fee of £2.40M.
    • They are coached by Allan Irvine a 56 year old Scotsman.
    • West Bromich Albion Football Club, were formed in 1878 (136 years) and are based in the West Midlands, England.
    • Their home ground is called ‘the hawthorns’ .
    • Albion were one of the founder members of the Football League in 1888 and have spent the majority of  their history in the top flight of the football League.
    • They have been champions only once in 1919; but have won the FA Cup five times.
    • The team plays in blue and white stripes.
    • Their main rivals are Aston Villa FC also in the premier league.
    • Nicknames are ‘The Baggies’ or ‘The Throttles’.
    1. Bryan Oviedo – Everton FC Premier League
    • 24 years old.
    • Born in San Jose Costa Rica.
    • Position: defender.
    • He joined Everton on August 31,2014 for a fee of £4.5M.
    • Everton is coached by Roberto Martinez, a 41 year-old from Spain.
    • The Everton Football Club is 136 years old, and is based in Liverpool England.
    • They are a premier league team; The club has played in the top division for a record 110 seasons.
    • They have been league champions nine times and FA Cup winners twice.
    • Formed in 1878, Everton was a founding member of the football league.
    • Their supporters are known as Evertonions and they have great rivalry with their neighbours in Liverpool, and the two clubs contest the ‘merseyside derby’.
    • The club’s ground is named Goodison Park.
    • Their nicknames are ‘The Toffees’ the ‘Blues’ the ‘School of Science’ or ‘The Peoples’ Club’.
    • The clubs colours are royal blue shirts and white shorts.
    • A famous player of the club was Dixie Deans who scored 60 goals in the 1927-28 season.
    1. Jose Cubero – Blackpool FC Championship League
    • 27 years old.
    • Born in Heredia Costa Rica.
    • Position: midfielder.
    • He joined the Blackpool football club on July 1, 2014 for an undisclosed fee.
    • Blackpool FC  is currently coached by Jose Riga, a 57 year-old Belgian man.
    • Blackpool Football Club was founded in 1887 and is based in the Lancashire seaside town of Blackpool.
    • They compete in the Championship League, the second tier of professional soccer in England.
    • Blackpool’s home ground is called Bloomfield Road since 1901.
    • Their nicknames are ‘The Tangerines’ the ‘Seaside’s’ or ‘The Pool’.
    • Their colours are tangerine shirts, white shorts.
    • They have never won the football league, but were runners up in 1955 and they won the FA Cup in 1953.
    • Stanley Matthews was a famous player for the club who became word famous with his dribbling skills and was still playing top flight football at the age of 52.
    • The clubs mayor rivals are Burnley, Bolton Wanderers, Oldham Athletic, Wigan Athletic, and Blackburn Rovers.
    1. Bryan Ruiz Fulham – FC Championship League
    • 29 years old.
    • Born in San Jose Costa Rica.
    • Position: striker.
    • Signed up with Fulham for a second time on July 1, 2014 for an undisclosed fee.
    • Fulham Football Club is the oldest professional club in the city of London, formed in 1879.
    • Their current coach is Felix Megath, a 61 year-old German.
    • The club has never won the football league, however they have reached two major finals, losing the 1975 FA Cup 2-0 to West Ham United, and in 2010 losing the final of the Europa League to Athetico Madrid in Hamburg.
    • The club has produced many fine players including English greats Johnny Hayes, George Cohen, Bobby Robson, Rodney Marsh, and Alan Mullery.
    • Their ground is on the banks of the Thames River and is known as Craven Cottage.
    • Their nicknames are ‘The Cottages’, ‘The Whites’ or ‘The Lillywhites’.
    • They play in white shirts and black shorts.
    • Even though they haven’t won much they are know to always play attractive football.
    1. Joel Campbell – Arsenal English Premier League
    • 22 years old
    • Born in San Jose, Costa Rica.
    • Position: Attacker or Forward.
    • He joined the Arsenal football club on the July 1, 2014 for an undisclosed fee.
    • The Arsenal Football Club is a Premier League club who play in London, England.
    • Arsene Wenger is their current first team coach, a Frenchman.
    • They have won the Football League 13 times and won the FA Cup 11 times.
    • Arsenal’s success has been particularly constant since the club was formed in 1886.
    • The club can boast to one of the highest incomes and it been estimated to be worth over £1.3 Billion.
    • The club’s colours are red shirts with white sleeves and white shorts.
    • The club’s nickname is ‘The Gunners’.
    • In July 2006, the club moved to a new stadium called ‘Emirates Stadium’ after Emirates Airlines.
    • In popular culture Arsenal have appeared in a number of media ‘firsts’: in 1927 a match against Sheffield United was the first game in history to be broadcasted live on radio; a decade later in 1937 an exhibition match against the reserve team was the first game to be televised ‘live’; in 2010 the world’s first 3D football match was shown live on TV, from London.
    • Arsenal also has a very successful women’s team.

    The English season is very long and competitive with the above mentioned teams playing at least 38 games and if successful in cup games, European games can be over 50 games at times.

    Some of the players have commitments to their country team too and their clubs usually release them as required.

    The Tico Five will certainly be made welcome in their new home.

    By Dave Marsden

    The Costa Rica News (TCRN)

    San Jose, Costa Rica

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