Barcelona and Spain's national team popularized tiki-taka in soccer. But their hypnotic passing style — when a squad tries to control the ball and dominate its opponent — is not alone . In Costa Rica there exists the tico-taka, which was on full display during a 2-0 win over Nigeria on Wednesday night.
It's true we're used to seeing Costa Rica with a more rough and raw style of play, but from time to time they show they can produce beautiful and poetic moments of fútbol. And that's when this tico-taka appears.
We're not going to hide the fact that Nigeria visited the Estadio Nacional for Costa Rica's last game on home soil before the World Cup with a "B Team" and without thier biggest stars. However, the victory and passages of play witnessed in San Jose will surely serve as moral oomph for Costa Rica in their journey to Qatar.
Just look at Joel Campbell showing off a Zidane roulette.
Joel Campbell y toda su calidad pic.twitter.com/yhIbYZSJ3F
Or what about this series of backheel touches and nutmegs from Campbell and Bryan Ruiz?
Tiemblan España y Alemania pic.twitter.com/IuYx8ccdDZ
Lovely stuff, right?
Costa Rica vs. Nigeria goals
But the night was not only about fancy touches. The game also bid an emotional farewell to virtuoso veteran Bryan Ruiz, who will hang up the boots once the World Cup ends.
Gracias por tanto capitán pic.twitter.com/t0ebMuNfqw
The player was honored by the local federation and fans before kick-off, then Ruiz showed the talent in his feet isn't done yet while serving as the object of hugs and displays of public affection during goal celebrations.
Speaking of goals, Costa Rica scored both from set pieces with Óscar Duarte and Kendall Waston bagging them.
Óscar Duarte (@ODuarte04) anotó el primero de #LaSele pic.twitter.com/Su7AXPHxBy
¡Waston aplasta! pic.twitter.com/cqfe3Safql
What's next for Costa Rica? On Nov. 17, Los Ticos visit Iraq for a friendly and then prepare for their debut in the World Cup against Spain on Nov. 23.
Yes, tico-taka vs tiki-taka.