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Costa Rica blanks Panama 2-0 in CONCACAF World Cup qualifier

Photo: Juan Carlos Ulate/Reuters

Celso Borges's 51st minute goal helped Costa Rica shutout Panama on Tuesday night.

SAN JOSE, Costa Rica (AP) — Goals by Bryan Ruiz and Celso Borges put Costa Rica in a stronger position to qualify for next year's World Cup with a 2-0 victory over Panama on Tuesday night.

The Costa Ricans have 11 points from six matches with a 3-1-2 record. That trails only the United States (4-1-1), which beat Honduras earlier in the night.

Ruiz opened the scoring on a free kick in the 49th minute, and Borges clinched it just about two minutes later from long distance in a steady rain at National Stadium.

Panama has six points on a 1-2-3 record and is fifth of the six teams.

The top three finishers from the CONCACAF finals will qualify for Brazil 2014, with the fourth-place team entering a playoff against New Zealand.

Copyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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