A substantial cross-section of US Men's National Team fans and associated media types have been ready for head coach Jurgen Klinsmann to be fired since around the time Landon Donovan was not selected to the USA squad for the 2014 World Cup (if not before). Since then, every loss - significant or otherwise - has been greeted by ever-louder calls for the coach to go.
Now USMNT is into the final phase of qualifying for the 2018 World Cup, expect the sack-Klinsi chorus to crescendo over the course of this Hex. The USA will either get to Russia 2018 or it won't, but Jurgen Klinsmann is going to hear about every mistake he makes - real or imagined - from now until whenever it is his days as USMNT head coach are over.
As it happens, Klinsi did make a significant blunder in the USA's very first game of the Hex. He sent his team out with a three-man back line: the tactical equivalent of a throwback jersey. And the throwback didn't fit the team quite as well as Klinsmann hoped. A mid-game change in formation did see USMNT work its way back into the match, but Rafael Marquez found a late winner to ensure that Klinsi's big mistake would not be forgotten.
The USA has started the Hex with a loss, and is now teetering on the edge of an early World Cup qualifying crisis.
Costa Rica does not get the respect it deserves in CONCACAF. Los Ticos have long been capable of living with the region's two biggest teams: in the 2014 Hexagonal, Costa Rica beat both Mexico and USMNT at home, tied El Tri at Azteca, and lost 1-0 to the USA in a memorably chaotic, snow-blighted game in Colorado.
At home, Costa Rica expects to win its CONCACAF World Cup qualifiers, regardless of the opponent. The player pool's depth is being tested by a succession of injuries and suspensions. Leonardo Gonzalez and Allan Miranda - thought to be long-forgotten options for the national team - have been called up as cover for Franciso Calvo (injured) and Cristian Gamboa (suspended). And the squad is already missing center backs Oscar Diarte and Giancarlo Gonzalez.
USMNT's concerns are also at the back: 'keeper Tim Howard will be fortunate to be available for the next round of Hex matches in March, after he suffered a serious injury in the USA's ill-fated game against Mexico.
Regardless of personnel or tactics, however, Costa Rica is favorite to win this one. Indeed, anything less than three points for Los Ticos will be disappointing for the home team.
Despite that fact, a loss for USMNT will be greeted as abject disaster by Klinsmann's numerous critics.
And zero points from the first two games of the Hex is not at all what the USA wants. There can be no pretending it is good or even positive for a top team in the region to be at the bottom of CONCACAF's final World Cup qualifying group after its first couple of matches.
Still, the first round of games in this tournament saw victories for all the away teams. USMNT has the ability to continue that trend, and this would be a good moment to upset the form book and claim a surprise win on Costa Rican soil.
Per livesoccertv.com, here's where to find the game: