BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. -- Fire defender and Costa Rican international Gonzalo Segares was disappointed by the news that FIFA had denied his nation’s appeal to replay last Friday’s 'SnowClasico' loss to the U.S. in Denver.
“I’ve never seen anything like that,” Segares told Chicago-Fire.com Tuesday. “Once it started coming pretty hard the game should have stopped. It was a little bit ridiculous once you have the people come in and shovel the snow to make it work.
The veteran left back found himself one of the few cheering for his country among a sea of U.S. fans at Cleo’s Bar in Ukrainian Village Friday night and as the snow began to pile up, pointed out that a UEFA qualifier between Northern Ireland and Russia had been called off earlier in the day.
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“It’s difficult. People might say we’re complaining now because we lost but had the result been the other way around, I think it would have been the same situation as well.”
“I think they gave it a try and it didn’t work out. They have to move on because there’s a game tonight at home against Jamaica and we have to get those three points. We’re last place right now but the good thing is we haven’t had a game at home yet. It’ll be good tonight to get the points and move on.”
Segares has said folks back home aren’t happy over the conditions and national team supporters are already targeting the U.S. return visit to Costa Rica in September for retribution.
“In qualifiers I think they do whatever it takes to get the points,” he explained. “I’m sure they’ll make it impossible for the U.S. when they come visit Costa Rica. The site hasn’t been named but maybe it’ll be Saprissa Stadium again because we know how hard it is for teams to come over there with the terrible artificial turf.
"I wouldn’t be surprised if they sang mariachi to the hotel – Costa Ricans are very creative so they’ll come up with some stuff to try and support the team and help the U.S. get off their game.”
Estadio Saprissa, where the U.S. is 0-7-0 all-time in World Cup qualifying matches certainly seems like the right site for the return leg. Next to Mexico City’s Azteca, its is perhaps the most consistently intimidating venue in all of the CONCACAF region.
Segares was invited by manager Jose Luis Pinto to be part of the Costa Rican team at the Copa Centroamericano qualifying tournament for this summer’s Gold Cup in January but turned down the call as it came just after his wedding.
With his last appearance for the national team coming in a pair of friendlies against Cuba and Venezuela in December 2011, Segares said his main focus remains with helping the club dig out of its 0-3-1 start to the 2013 campaign.
“My last contact with the national team was in January,” he said. “I think right now the most important thing for me is here with the Fire. We’re in a tough situation but we have to keep going. We cannot get unmotivated.
“We have a good team and we have to keep pushing our guys to bounce back. That’s my only concern.”