Costa Rica and Trinidad & Tobago played to a dour scoreless draw on Wednesday afternoon in Port-of-Spain, the home side gaining their first point of the final round of CONCACAF World Cup qualifying while Costa Rica fell back into a tie for third place in the group.
The Soca Warriors held most of the action, but the majority of the match was played in midfield with little threat to either goal.
The closest either team came to scoring was in the 75th minute when Costa Rica goalkeeper Alvaro Mesen spilled an easy shot as he fell to the ground, though he was able to scramble back and swipe the ball off the line.
TRINIDAD: Clayton Ince, Marlon Rojas, David Charles, Angus Eve, Dennis Lawrence, Cornell Glen, Carlos Edwards (Hector Sam 72), Silvio Spann (Leslie Fitzpatrick 63), Anton Pierre, Dwight Yorke, Stern John.
COSTA RICA: Alvaro Mesén, Gilberto Martínez, Luis Marín, Leonardo González, Harold Wallace, Douglas Sequeira, Cristian Badilla, Walter Centeno, Alonso Solís (Carlos Hernández 50), Oscar Rojas (Paulo Wanchope 68), Whayne Wilson (Andy Herron 63).
Panama and Mexico played to a surprising 1-1 draw in the other match of the final hexagonal on Wednesday night at Estadio Rommel Fernandez in Panama.
The home side attacked without fear against Mexico, riding a wave of confidence in their seeming return as the power of the region following the 2-1 victory against the USA on Sunday. Ramón Morales gave Mexico the lead in the 26th minute, but Luis Tejada equalized 17 minutes from the end with an overhead volley that surprised Mexican goalkeeper Osvaldo Sánchez.
Mexico played a man down for the final half-hour after Pavel Pardo was sent off after striking Panama striker Juan Solís.
Unlike at the weekend at Estadio Azteca, Mexico appeared to take the game at a slower pace in Panama, and often found themselves hemmed in and pressured by the home side.
Panama also caused the Mexican defense some anxious moments through the pace of their main attacking threat, José Luis 'Pistolero' Garcés, and veteran striker Roberto Brown.
PANAMA: Jaime Penedo, Luis Moreno, Felipe Baloy, Anthony Torres, Armando Gun, Ricardo Phillips (Joel Solanilla 88), Alberto Blanco, Juan Solís (Engin Mitre), Julio Medina, José Garcés, Roberto Brown (Luis Tejada 54).
MEXICO: Oswaldo Sánchez, Carlos Salcido, Ricardo Osorio, Rafael Márquez, Salvador Carmona, Héctor Altamirano, Pavel Pardo, Ramón Morales (Gonzalo Pineda 57), Zinha, Cuauhtémoc Blanco (Rafael García 59), Jared Borgetti (Alberto Medina 71)
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