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The Costa Rica Second Division, also known as Liga Movistar for sponsorship reasons, is a professional league for football clubs in Costa Rica. It is the second largest football competition in the country, played by 18 clubs and running after a promotion and relegation system. The competition was founded in 1921.
Football is the most popular sport in Costa Rica. Costa Rica has long been considered an exporter of soccer players in Central America, with 19 players in European professional football leagues in 2006. The newspaper La Nación has since 1994 created an annual census of these "legionnaires".
The country's most important professional league is the Costa Rican Primera División operated by UNAFUT. There is a second league, Segunda División de Costa Rica, in which the last team of Primera descended after each season and from which the champion went up to Primera. and a third league in addition to many amateur players.
Costa Rican players have made significant contributions to the professional leagues of other nations, notably the Mexican Primera Division since becoming a pro in 1943. These "legionnaires" have represented the Costa Rican national football team, which has recently included several players who have signed contracts with clubs outside of Costa Rica during the 2014 FIFA World Cup qualifying campaign. On 24 June 2014, the team from Costa Rica qualified for the knockout round of the FIFA World Cup. It prevailed against Uruguay 3-1 and Italy 1-0 and prevailed against England. The victory over Greece on penalties secured them a place in the quarterfinals.
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