Soccer

Costa Rica wants US match at old Saprissa stadium

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SAN JOSE, Costa Rica (AP)

The Costa Rica Football Federation is seeking to move its Sept. 6 World Cup qualifier against the Unites States from the National Stadium to the smaller Ricardo Saprissa venue.

The National Stadium in the capital San Jose opened in 2011, while Saprissa is an aging stadium with artificial turf. At Saprissa, the fans are right behind the benches and have previously thrown bags of urine and other projectiles at opponents.

Eduardo Li, president of Costa Rica's football federation, said Wednesday the venue shift is what the Costa Rican people want.

''The voice of the people is the voice of God, and if people want us to play there, we will play in the Saprissa against the United States,'' Li said in an interview with the radio station Radio Rican DNA.

No one at the federation immediately responded to calls from The Associated Press seeking comment.

FIFA would have to approve the change in venue.

Li said Club Saprissa President Juan Carlos Rojas was willing to make the necessary arrangements at the stadium to host the match.

''I would not want to say anything else about the possibility of holding other matches there, but if we play at the Saprissa, we have to have the right conditions and that's what I told Mr. Juan Carlos Rojas,'' Li said.

The possible change of venue comes after Costa Rica lost 1-0 in its recent visit to the United States, a game played in heavy snow in Colorado. Costa Rica filed a complaint with FIFA about the field's conditions, but the complaint was dismissed.

Before facing the United States, Costa Rica hosts Honduras on June 7. Four days later, it will visit Mexico and then it will play Panama in a home game on June 18.



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