Costa Rica become last country to qualify for Qatar tournament that begins on November 21st. Costa Rica beat New Zealand 1-0 in the final intercontinental playoff to complete the 32 finalists who will play in this year’s World Cup finals in Qatar. In Doha, Los Ticos took the early lead they sustained until the final whistle when Campbell scored after three minutes. The former Arsenal player, now with Monterrey in Mexico, converted a cross after great work from the teenager, Jewison Bennette, down the left flank.

New Zealand fought back and had much of the pressure in the first half. Chris Wood, the Newcastle striker, had the ball in the net in the 39th minute, only for VAR to overrule an equaliser after a foul in the buildup. The check found that Matthew Garbett had fouled Óscar Duarte. A match that often threatened to boil over saw Luis Fernando Suárez, the Costa Rica coach, make three subs at half-time, including the introduction of the veteran captain, Bryan Ruiz, but New Zealand continued to create many more chances.


GROUP A                Qatar     Ecuador Senegal  Netherlands

GROUP B                England Iran        USA         Wales

GROUP C                Argentina              Saudi Arabia        Mexico   Poland

GROUP D               France    Denmark                Tunisia  Australia

GROUP E                Spain      Germany                Japan     Costa Rica

GROUP F                Belgium Canada  Morocco                Croatia

GROUP G               Brazil     Serbia    Switzerland           Cameroon

GROUP H               Portugal                Ghana    Uruguay South Korea

But their hopes were seriously damaged when Kosta Barbarouses, the second-half sub brought on by New Zealand manager Danny Hay, lasted barely eight minutes before being dismissed for a studs-up foul on Francisco Calvo. A VAR check saw his yellow card converted to red. With Barb arouses appeared to go the All Whites’ hopes of playing at a third successive World Cup finals.