Costa Rica’s Navas makes Real Madrid debut in win

Costa Rica international goalkeeper Keylor Navas made his Spanish La Liga debut for Real Madrid in a 5-1 win over Elche on September 23, 2014. (Photo courtesy of Real Madrid)

MADRID, Spain – Costa Rica goalkeeper Keylor Navas made his La Liga debut for European champion Real Madrid in a 5-1 win over visiting Elche on Tuesday.  The 2014 FIFA World Cup standout played the entire game, allowing only a 15th minute penalty kick to Edu Albacar. 

In the victory, Ronaldo netted four goals and Gareth Bale added the other. 

Three days earlier, another CONCACAF superstar – Mexico’s Javier Hernandez – scored his first two goals for the Spanish giant in an 8-2 win at Deportivo La Coruña. 

Head coach Carlo Ancelotti inserted Navas into the starting line-up as a replacement for Spanish World Cup champion Iker Casillas, who had conceded eight goals in four league games. 

Navas helped Costa Rica to its first-ever World Cup quarterfinal berth at Brazil 2014, where it fell to the Netherlands 4-3 on penalty kicks after a 0-0 draw.  He also posted shutouts against Italy and England in Group D play. 

The 27-year-old joined Real Madrid in August after more than two years with Levante.