MIAMI, June 11 Walter Centeno's first-half free
kick lifted Costa Rica off the bottom of CONCACAF Gold Cup
Group A with a 1-0 win over Guadeloupe on Monday.
The 30-metre strike in the 14th minute was the only goal of
an ill-tempered game at the Orange Bowl.
Costa Rica moved joint top of the group standings, level on
four points with Guadeloupe.
Canada (three points) and Haiti (two) were due to meet in
the day's second match. The top two teams in each of the three
groups advance to the quarter-finals, along with the two best
Eleven minutes after Centeno's goal, Guadeloupe nearly
equalised when Costa Rica goalkeeper Jose Francisco Porras was
forced to save a point-blank shot by defender David Sommeil.
Costa Rica's Alvaro Saborio had a penalty shout waved away
shortly after halftime. In the 80th minute, Guadeloupe keeper
Franck Grandel parried a long-distance shot from Rolando
The contest was littered with fouls and featured seven
yellow cards, five to Costa Rica players.
The CONCACAF Gold Cup, being staged in six U.S. cities,
will determine the champion of the region, which includes North
America, Central America and the Caribbean. The winners earn an
automatic berth in the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup.
(Reporting by Dan Shalin in Chicago)