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Thursday, 13 June, 2002, 17:19 GMT 18:19 UK

Ticos take honourable exit

By Rodrigo Amaral
BBC Sport Online

The Costa Rican media are sad but proud of their national team.

"Back home with honour," is the headline in San Jose's daily Prensa Libre following the rousing 5-2 defeat by Brazil on Thursday.

The newspaper says that the team ran out of steam just when they needed "to fly the highest", putting an end to their odyssey in the World Cup finals.

"Costa Rica felt fear, a terror that paralysed us and cut us down to size, making us forget that we could score goals," it says.

La Republica also adopts a mournful tone, writing in its headline that "the dream is over".

But the match reports show considerable satisfaction that Costa Rica were able, at least in parts of the match, to take on Brazil as equals.

The difference was that the Brazilians wasted fewer opportunities in front of goal.

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