In what was Steffen’s first World Cup qualifying debut, the City keeper was confident and assured, making several important saves at crucial moments.
He received a warm reception from the sell-out Columbus crowd having played for Columbus Crew from 2016 to 2019.
The States, playing their third game in seven days, had to recover from a dreadful start before eventually overcoming Los Ticos in Columbus.
With a minute not yet on the clock, Steffen was forced to race to race out of his box to head the ball clear – but Costa Rica quickly won possession back and Ronald Matarrita’s cross was converted by Keysher Fuller to give the visitors a dream start.
Despite the set-back, USA remained focused and began to dominate possession and deservedly levelled on 25 minutes with Sergiño Dest emphatically scoring from 18 yards out.
Steffen, winning his 24th cap, twice made smart saves on 37 and 39 minutes to ensure his country went into the break on level terms.
USA continued to press for a winner in the second period, and it came in the form of a Tim Weah shot that spun in off the post on 66 minutes.
The hosts held out to secure victory and move to second in the North/Central America qualification group, three points behind Mexico and one ahead of Canada with still eight rounds of matches to play.