Having already secured passage into the knockout rounds, Colombia opted for a rotated lineup against Costa Rica, who were coming off of a 4-0 shellacking by the US Men's National Team. No James, no Cuadrado, no Cardona, no Bacca — ten (10!) changes in all — no problem still, right?
Less than two minutes into the match, Costa Rica produced a moment of magic and while Colombia hit back almost immediately, the Ticos managed to build a 3-1 lead before Colombia finally decided to start playing like they actually cared about the result. By that time, manager Jose Pekerman had introduced James, Cardona (both at the half) and then Cuadrado as well and it was the latter who provided the assist for Colombia's second with a really nice bit of movement, control and vision. When he puts his mind to it, Johnny Squared really can be a very neat player.
Colombia poured forward but were uncharacteristically inaccurate and imprecise (especially James Rodriguez) and Costa Rica held on. For them, the only thing on the line was pride. For Colombia, the loss, combined with the USA's win over Paraguay, means that they will (most likely) face Brazil in the Round of 16, while the US "only" have to face Ecuador (or Peru). Oops.
(Though Colombia did beat Dunga's men in the group stages of last year's Copa, and this is hardly a vintage edition of Brazil despite the 7-1 win over Haiti the other day.)