• Sunday Aug 28, 2016

    Back to health, NYC FC’s Matarrita earns Costa Rica call-up

    Costa Rica's Ronald Matarrita (white jersey) has played in 18 games for New York City FC during the 2016 MLS season thus far. (Photo: Mexsport)

     

    NEW YORK – On August 20, for the first time in almost six weeks, defender Ronald Matarrita started a Major League Soccer game.

    That was very good for him, very good for his club (New York City FC) and could be very good for his national team (Costa Rica).

    Days after playing 85 minutes in a 1-0 win over the visiting LA Galaxy, Matarrita earned a call-up to Costa Rica for its World Cup qualifiers against Haiti (September 2, away) and Panama (September 6, home). A draw in either game will see the Ticos advances to the CONCACAF Hexagonal.

    "I am always thinking about being called up by Costa Rica," said Matarrita, who helped set up the lone goal as David Villa put home a rebound of his shot in the sixth minute. "I try to play as best as I can when I am not with the team. It's an extra motivation to play well. I have been working so hard."

    Matarrita, sidelined with a high ankle sprain, had come on as a second-half substitute in a 3-3 draw at Columbus a week earlier. He was deemed fit enough to start against LA.

    "[It] was a very special game to me," said the 22-year- of the Galaxy encounter. "I was very excited. To be able to come back after a month and a half is not easy for any player.

    After a start to the season that saw it go 1W-4D-3L, NYC FC has been among MLS’ hottest teams, posting a 10-4-4 record in its last 18 outings. That stretch has seen the club reach the top of the Eastern Conference standings. 

    "Right now, we are one of the best teams," Matarrita concluded. "There has been a drastic change from the beginning of the season to how we are now, playing together."

  • Champions League

    Related News



RELATED NEWS YOU'LL LIKE

Arena resigns as U.S. head coach

Bruce Arena resigned as United States head coach Friday after the team failed to reach the 2018 FIFA World Cup in his second tenure in charge.

Costa Rica’s Ramirez reflects on WCQ

A 2-1 loss Tuesday at Panama on the final matchday of CONCACAF qualifying for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, couldn’t stop Costa Rica head coach Oscar Ramirez...

Honduras celebrates playoff opportunity

After heading into the last matchday of CONCACAF World Cup Qualifying in fifth-place, Honduras was delighted to exit it with a spot in the intercontinental playoff against Australia thanks to Tuesday’s 3-2 win over first-place Mexico

Panama lives the dream, looks forward to future

For Panama, the dream is now a reality.

U.S. laments T&T loss

Stunned and contrite after being eliminated from FIFA World Cup contention, the United States made no excuses after a 2-1 loss to host Trinidad & Tobago in the CONCACAF Hexagonal on Tuesday night.