MENTION Costa Rica to the Scottish football fraternity, and visions of Italia 90, a backheel and a shock defeat for the national team spring immediately to mind.
David Moyes, though, is hoping the Central American country can provide somewhat better fortune for his Everton team.
The Goodison manager swooped on transfer deadline day to bolster his squad with the arrival of Costa Rica international Bryan Oviedo from Danish side FC Copenhagen.
The 22-year-old, who was part of the Costa Rica team that reached the semi-finals of the Under-20 World Cup in 2009, has been signed as cover for both Leighton Baines and Steven Pienaar down the left flank.
It has been a rapid rise for Oviedo, who arrived in Denmark in 2010 after only seven league appearances for homeland club Saprissa and has won the Danish Cup in successive seasons, first on loan at FC Nordsjælland and then with Copenhagen.
“I am very happy,” says the Costa Rican. “This is a really good opportunity to me. The days before the transfer were a bit stressed but I am happy now and feeling good.
“I was a little nervous when I heard about Everton’s interest because they are a very good team and a big club. I knew Everton were watching me for a few games when I was at Copenhagen.
“I am a player who is better in defence, but I can help out in attack. I am a defender mainly. I can play both at left-back and left midfield, but I’ve played at left-back for many years. Recently I have been playing a bit further upfield.
“My first ambition is to play in the starting line-up, I’ve come here to play. But I want to help the team.
“I’ve seen Everton games on television and I’ve watched Premier League games, so I know what it is like.
“I need to work hard to get into the team because I know Everton have very good players. I’ll need to train very well to have a chance in the squad.”
It says much about the quality of Moyes’s squad that Oviedo is one of 13 players to have been called-up by their country’s senior side for the current international break, although Steven Pienaar misses out for South African through injury.
“I am already considering the best ways to consistently get the best from our players,” says Moyes. “I will need to look closely at managing the season so as to give us every opportunity to do well for a longer period of the campaign than we have previously.
“I will, at times, look to rest and rotate when I see fit which will continue to give some young players opportunities to show what they can do.
“We are looking for a long successful season in both cups and the league and will have to use our squad wisely.”
Moyes has also been busy bolstering the youth ranks of his team, having seen Jose Baxter, Joao Silva, James Wallace and Shkodran Mustafi depart in the summer.
Franciso Junior arrived earlier in the year, while Everton made another deadline day move to secure the signature of 17-year-old Scottish forward Matthew Kennedy from Kilmarnock.
And the youngster is intent on taking inspiration from a fellow Goodison newcomer he used to watch turn out for Killie from the stands.
“I’m following in the footsteps of Steven Naismith, who started in Kilmarnock,” says Kennedy. “I’ve watched Steven since I was a young boy, I think he’s brilliant. I want to follow what he has done.
“I found out before pre-season that Everton were interested, but it was only in the last week of the window that the interest became more and more serious.
“I’m more of a wide player, I like to take players on and create chances. I’ve chosen to come to Everton because they like to bring players through.”
With the sale of Jack Rodwell to Manchester City for an initial £12million funding much of Moyes’s summer business, the common consensus is that Everton have enjoyed a profitable transfer window.
The feelgood factor of the opening wins over Manchester United and Aston Villa was dented slightly by a disappointing performance in losing 2-0 at West Bromwich Albion last weekend.
But goalkeeper Tim Howard is confident Everton have the potential this season to keep rubbing shoulders with the leading Premier League contenders.
“We have shown come Christmas time that we kick into high gear and there’s no reason to think that that will change,” says the United States international.
“We always talk about European football and this is important to this club.
“Having said that, it’s going to be difficult to but if we can keep our top players healthy, then of course we want to be shooting for those Champions League spots.”