Spain 7-0 Costa Rica: Player Rating as Gavi among the goals as La Roja run riot

Spain were emphatic winners against Costa Rica in their opening 2022 World Cup match, with Barcelona teenager Gavi among the scorers.

Gavi marked becoming Spain’s youngest player at a major tournament with a goal in an emphatic 7-0 win over Costa Rica as La Roja kicked off their Qatar 2022 campaign in style.

Group E rivals Germany suffered a shock 2-1 loss to Japan earlier on Wednesday, but Spain did not look under any threat after Dani Olmo gave them an 11th-minute lead.

That was La Roja’s 100th World Cup goal and another two followed inside the opening 31 minutes through Marco Asensio’s strike and a Ferran Torres penalty.

Torres doubled his tally early in the second half and Gavi then steered in a delightful volley, before substitutes Carlos Soler and Alvaro Morata added two more late on.

Spain vs Costa Rica player ratings, World Cup

1. Spain (4-3-3)

Gavi, Alejandro Balde
Gavi was unbelievable / Clive Mason/GettyImages

GK: Unai Simon – 6/10 – Had very, very little to do. Acted as another outfielder as Enrique insists.

RB: Cesar Azpilicueta – 6/10 – There were a few eyebrows raised when he was named in the starting XI. In hindsight, such a walkover was perfect for Azpilicueta to come in for the ill Dani Carvajal.

CB: Rodri – 6/10 – Enrique clearly doesn’t trust a lot of his centre-back options, starting a natural midfielder in defence.

CB: Aymeric Laporte – 6/10 – Had an early miscommunication with Busquets but was fine from there on in.

LB: Jordi Alba – 8/10 – Like Azpilicueta, there have been questions over Alba’s continued involvement with the Spain setup, but he rolled back the years with a classic lung-busting performance here.

DM: Sergio Busquets – 7/10 – Another of Enrique’s old guard who looked right at home in such game played at their own pace.

CM: Gavi – 10/10 – How about that for a major tournament debut? Gavi flittered between the lines and looked the spit of the legendary midfielders who preceded him.

CM: Pedri – 8/10 – Ditto. Spain’s future is in safe hands as long as the Barcelona duo remain fit.

RW: Ferran Torres – 8/10 – The quietest of Spain’s front three but still scored twice had joy running down both flanks.

CF: Marco Asensio – 8/10 – Whether running in behind or dropping deep, Asensio looked like a natural centre forward and gave Costa Rica’s defenders headaches throughout.

LW: Dani Olmo – 9/10 – Worked perfectly in tandem with his fellow attackers and supporting-cast midfielders.

SUB: Alvaro Morata (57′ for Torres) – 8/10

SUB: Carlos Soler (57′ for Pedri) – 7/10

SUB: Alejandro Balde (64′ for Alba) – 7/10

SUB: Koke (64′ for Busquets) – 6/10

SUB: Neco Williams (69′ for Asensio) – 7/10

Manager: Luis Enrique – 9/10 – The ideal start. Enrique’s selection decisions were vindicated and his players put in a top performance.

2. Costa Rica (4-4-2)

Keylor Navas
A rare picture of the ball in Navas’ hands / Clive Mason/GettyImages

GK: Keylor Navas – 2/10 – Should have probably done better with Spain’s second goal. Helpless regardless.

RB: Carlos Martinez – 1/10 – Torn inside-out by Olmo before being hooked at half-time. A day to forget.

CB: Oscar Duarte – 1/10 – Got too tight to Alba when giving away the penalty.

CB: Francisco Calvo – 2/10 – Only marginally better than Duarte in that he did not give away a penalty.

LB: Bryan Oviedo – 2/10 – One of Costa Rica’s more experienced heads wasn’t much use at either end.

RM: Keysher Fuller – 1/10 – Naturally a right-back, Fuller did little to help Martinez in their battles with Olmo, Torres and Alba.

CM: Celso Borges – 3/10 – Did little to win the midfield battle, though that was understandable up against Gavi, Pedri and Busquets.

CM: Yeltsin Tejeda – 3/10 – Yeah, seriously, this was a battle they just were not going to win.

LM: Jewison Bennette – 4/10 – Looked lively on the break but had little support.

CF: Joel Campbell – 2/10 – Like Oviedo was unable to make his 2014 experience count.

CF: Anthony Contreras – 3/10 – Anonymous throughout.

SUB: Kendall Waston (46′ for Martinez) – 2/10

SUB: Alvaro Zamora (62′ for Contreras) – 2/10

SUB: Bryan Ruiz (62′ for Bennette) – 2/10

SUB: Brandon Aguilera (72′ for Borges) – N/A

SUB: Ronald Matarrita (82′ for Oviedo) – N/A

Manager: Luis Suarez – 3/10 – There’s not much he could have done about such an early collapse, but Costa Rica looked hopeless throughout.

Player of the Match – Gavi


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