The match started out relatively subdued, though Costa Rica (and Chicago Fire) defender Francisco Calvo tried to put some sizzle into the match with a 19th-minute shot from distance that just floated a bit too high. Neither team did much to trouble the goalkeepers through the first half-hour-plus, though Suriname did trouble some Ticos field players, to the tune of yellow cards for Ridgeciano Haps and Ryan Donk.
Ariel Rodriguez had a chance in the 35th minute in front of goal, but what was either a botched shot or a botched outlet pass to Joel Campbell rolled timidly in front of goal and Suriname was able to clear the danger.
Suriname actually had the best chance of the first half, with Sheraldo Becker steaming down the left wing in the 40th minute, taking a shot himself rather than feeding Concacaf Nations League Top Scorer Award winner Gleofilo Vlijter. Though Esteban Alvarado looked a little awkward stopping the shot, he was able to keep Becker from scoring.
Alvarado had another awkward moment three minutes later, charging toward the 18 to meet Florian Jozefzoon and colliding with him, leading to a free kick from a dangerous spot at the edge of the box close to where the collision happened. However, Jozefoon went wide of goal on his free kick, and they went to the locker rooms knotted at zero.
However, Vlijter got Suriname on the scoreboard seven minutes after the break, collecting a pass from Damil Dankerlui with his back to goal, then turning and firing a shot that found the mark.
Costa Rica answered the bell six minutes later, with FC Cincinnati’s Ronald Matarrita setting up veteran forward Joel Campbell for the equalizing header. Then, a minute later, Celso Borges doubled Costa Rica’s lead.