Celso Borges is dreaming of emulating his father's achievements as Costa Rica quietly set their sights on a second qualification for the FIFA World Cup™ knock-out rounds.

Back in 1990 in their first ever World Cup participation, the Ticos stunned everyone by qualifying from a group that included Brazil.

And playing a crucial role in that surprising success was Alexandre Borges, whose pass set up team-mate Hernan Medford for the goal two minutes from time that gave them a 2-1 victory over Sweden and secured their place in the last 16.

Now, 24 years on, and the younger Borges, a fan of metal band Slipknot, is dreaming of making his mark on Costa Rican football by helping the current generation emulate the class of '90.

"I was two years old, it's hard for me to remember but I've seen the videos and over time I've realised how important that pass, that goal, was and I'm hugely proud that my father played his part in such a sporting moment," said the 26-year-old, who plies his club trade in Sweden for AIK Solna.

The signs are good for Borges after his classy play-making role in Saturday's 3-1 win over Uruguay that has put the side within touching distance of qualification. One more win, against either Italy or England, would almost certainly be enough, while even a single draw may suffice.

And what better place to mark his country's history than Brazil, the homeland of his grandfather, who was born in Maceio, some 200km from Recife, where Costa Rica will play Italy on Friday.

His father's full name, Alexandre Borges Guimaraes, belied the Brazilian roots of his ancestors and his father was even nicknamed 'Guima' during his playing days. Yet to make an impact in the same way as his father did playing for the national team, Borges has at least tried to furrow his own path.

Unlikely Swedish favourite
Following on from five national titles won with San Jose-based Deportivo Saprissa, Borges headed to Scandinavia to further his football education. After three seasons with Fredrikstad in Norway, Borges earnt a move to Stockholm giants Solna in 2012.

There he quickly became a fans' favourite and with their own country absent from the Brazilian extravaganza, Solna's supporters took the opportunity at the last game of the season against Elfsborg to show Borges their affection.

They unfurled a banner in Spanish saying: "This summer we're all Costa Ricans: good luck for the World Cup." Ten days before that, Borges had lifted their spirits by scoring a goal from 35 yards out.

If he is popular in Stockholm, he is even more so in his homeland where Borges can count 72,000 followers on his official Twitter page, where he recently set a picture of Christ the Redeemer on Corcovado overlooking the beaches of Copacabana and Ipanema as his background.

Borges seems in touch with his fans, having written a message of thanks for their support on Twitter after the Uruguay exploit, a measure of revenge for having been beaten by La Celeste in the World Cup play-offs ahead of the last tournament in South Africa. "Thanks for the support! There's still a long way to go but we're in good shape," said Borges.

The next part of that path takes them to Recife to play the Azzurri, for whom Andrea Pirlo continues to dazzle with his orchestrating brilliance from midfield. In Pirlo there are shades of Borges's own hero, Zinedine Zidane, yet the Costa Rican says facing such luminaries holds no fear for him.

"I won't be intimidated, they are like me, the only thing is they play in a better league," he said.