Costa Rica pulled off one of the biggest upsets of the 2014 FIFA World Cup, beating Italy 1-0 in Recife, Brazil and punching their ticket to the Round of 16.

The result also guarantees England's first-round exit from the tournament.

Costa Rica's captain Bryan Ruiz met Junior Diaz's cross from the left with a great 44th-minute header to cap an excellent first-half display by his team, who had a strong penalty claim turned down moments earlier.

Goal-line technology was used to show that the ball bounced down and in after hitting the bar.​

Mario Balotelli wasted two good early opportunities for the four-times winners but Italy failed to impose themselves on the game as the group outsiders played with confidence and control to claim their second victory.

Man of the match

Bryan Ruiz. The Costa Rican midfielder scored the most important goal of his career, and the biggest goal for Los Ticos in the last 24 years. 

Fast fact

Costa Rica is through to the Round of 16 for the second time in its history — the first was in 1990. England is eliminated in the group stage of the FIFA World Cup for the first time since 1958. 

What this means

Costa Rica leads the group on six points and go into the knockout stage for the second time in its history.

Italy and Uruguay, who meet on Tuesday, each have three points but Italy's superior goal difference means they need only a draw to go through. England, on zero points, are now certain to go out at the group stage for the first time since 1958.

They said it

"Maybe there are a lot of people who didn't have faith in us because we were in the 'Group of Death'. But the dead are the other ones and we're going to the next round." — Costa Rica goal-scorer Bryan Ruiz

"We gave our all. They did well to block every pass," said. "There's no worry now. We just need to regain our energy." — Italy coach Cesare Prandelli.

With files from Reuters