first_imgCosta Rica will not take the Switzerland route against Neymar and Brazil.Coach Oscar Ramirez has declared that Costa Rica have their own strategy to stop Neymar from wrecking havoc against them at Saint Petersburg on Friday but they will not attempt to foul him out of the game.Neymar became the most fouled player in the World Cup in the last 20 years during Brazil’s 1-1 draw against Switzerland. Post that match, Neymar had trouble training and even had a sore ankle but brushed aside concerns over his match fitness.During the 2014 World Cup, Neymar’s tournament ended prematurely when Colombia’s Zuniga fouled him such that the Brazilian superstar fractures a vertebra.2018 FIFA WORLD CUP: FULL COVERAGECosta Rica, instead, want to go for man-marking.”Neymar is a very skilled player and it’s true that people have tried to stop him a little aggressively,” Ramirez told reporters on the eve of the match. “We have our own strategy and we will see what happens.”Maybe we will cover him by two men. But of course we don’t want to see any sort of offences against him or any unfair attacks against him. The players know what to do.”FIFA WORLD CUP: FIXTURES | POINTS TABLEThe 53-year-old announced his starting lineup at his pre-match news conference, revealing he would make one change to the side that were beaten by Serbia, with Bryan Oviedo coming in at left back in place of Francisco Calvo.Ramirez also called for Costa Rica’s fans to keep faith with the team, saying that reaching the quarter-finals in Brazil four years ago had raised expectations to such an extent that pressure was being piled on his players.advertisementalso read – World Cup 2018: Neymar returns to practice ahead of Costa Rica match”We know our country very well and people in our country don’t like losing,” he added. “Whenever we defend our colours and our shirt we want to win. Sometimes we are a little self-destructive I fear.”Reports have emerged of splits in the dressing room and a falling out between players but Ramirez said his team were all pulling in the same direction.Also read – World Cup 2018: Lackluster Brazil held to 1-1 draw by Switzerland”Certain information has been published and supposedly they come from inside the team, but I wouldn’t say so,” he added.”It’s true that some players are closer to some others, but they are not different groups, there are no problems within the team. I haven’t had to intervene at all, there were no clashes.”Also read – World Cup 2018: Kolarov fires Serbia to crucial win over Costa RicaSkipper Bryan Ruiz said Costa Rica were motivated at the thought of facing five-time world champions Brazil and were mentally prepared for the task ahead.”It’s very motivating to be able to play against Brazil during a World Cup,” he added. “Both teams are fighting to qualify for the next stage so I’m sure it’s going to be a very intense game.”We have prepared very well physically and tactically, so we will have to use that in tomorrow’s game, as well as our psychological strength.”(With Reuters inputs)last_img

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