MONTEVIDEO, Nov 27 (Reuters) - Factbox on World Cup
Form and Prospects
Uruguay at a World Cup in Brazil is enough to send shudders
down the spine of Brazilian fans given the stigma still attached
to Brazil's most famous defeat when they lost 2-1 to the
Uruguayans in the 1950 tournament's "Maracanazo".
That feat, winning the decider at the Maracana when a draw
in the no-final format would have been enough for Brazil to lift
the trophy should spur coach Oscar Tabarez's reigning South
American champions to surpass themselves in trademark fashion on
familiar South American soil.
And they have, of course, won the World Cup twice on the
continent, winning the inaugural competition in Uruguay in 1930,
followed up by victory in Brazil 20 years later.
In style the team is essentially the same as that which
swept them to the semi-finals four years ago, playing 4-4-2 but
breaking into 4-3-1-2 when in attack with Cristian "Cebolla"
(onion) Rodriguez in the Diego Forlan "hole" behind Luis Suarez
and Edinson Cavani.
Rodriguez has had the added incentive of wanting to reach
the finals because he missed out on South Africa when a
four-match suspension picked up in the qualifiers meant he would
be unavailable for the first two group games and Tabarez opted
to leave him at home.
The defence is virtually unchanged and the same three
holding midfielders are available for selection starting with
the in-form Egidio Arevalo Rios.
Generational turnover comes in the form mainly of forwards
Gaston Ramirez and Cristhian Stuani, while Nicolas Lodeiro has
matured over the four-year cycle and brings creative talent to
Coach: Oscar Washington Tabarez
Nicknamed El Maestro (teacher), Tabarez has been in charge
for more than 100 matches over two spells - 1988-90 and from
When he leaves the job his legacy will have been to head
Uruguay's most successful national team since 1970 and provided
a sound platform for future generations of Uruguayan players.
As coach, the 66-year-old has led Uruguay to the World Cup
semi-finals in 2010 and the country's record 15th Copa America
crown in 2011.
He has successfully handled the team's transition from one
World Cup to the next, carefully introducing new talent while
keeping the old guard fresh.
Diego Forlan owed almost as much to Tabarez as to his own
skills when he was voted the best player at the 2010 finals in
South Africa and at 34 he is still a key member of the squad,
now in a supersub role.
Key player: Luis Suarez
One of the top goal predators in the world, Suarez has
forged a name for himself at the top of the game despite
behaviour problems on the pitch, especially as a Liverpool
player in England.
He is highly regarded by his peers and team mates and his
ability to score all types of goals while also creating chances
for those around him has helped turn Liverpool into potential
Premier League title contenders this season.
Suarez reads the game extremely well and this allows him to
dart into scoring positions by surprise or set up team mates. He
runs tirelessly in and around the box and even as deep as the
halfway line looking for the best option to link with fellow
He top-scored with 11 goals, one more than Argentina's
Lionel Messi, in 14 appearances in the 16-match South American
qualifying group, missing two through suspension.
He holds the Uruguay scoring record with a tally of 39,
three more than Diego Forlan.
How they qualified - South American zone 5th place; winners
of inter-continental playoff v Jordan
Oct 7 Bolivia H W 4-2 Suarez, Lugano 2,
Oct 11 Paraguay A D 1-1 Forlan
Nov 11 Chile H W 4-0 Luis Suarez 4
June 2 Venezuela H D 1-1 Forlan
June 10 Peru H W 4-2 Suarez, Pereira,
Sept 7 Colombia A L 4-0
Sept 11 Ecuador H D 1-1 Cavani
Oct 12 Argentina A L 3-0
Oct 16 Bolivia A L 4-1 Suarez
March 22 Paraguay H D 1-1 Suarez
Mar 26 Chile A L 2-0
June 11 Venezuela A W 1-0 Cavani
Sept 6 Peru A W 2-1 Suarez 2 (1 pen)
Sept 10 Colombia H W 2-0 Cavani, Stuani
Oct 11 Ecuador A L 1-0
Oct 15 Argentina H W 3-2 Rodriguez, Suarez
Nov 13 Jordan A W 5-0 Pereira, Stuani
Lodeiro, Rodriguez, Cavani
Nov 20 Jordan H D 0-0
World Cup record:
Previous appearances: 11 (1930, 1950, 1954, 1962, 1966,
1970, 1974, 1986, 1990, 2002, 2010)
Best performance: Winners 1930, 1950
Odds: William Hill odds to win World Cup (Nov 2013): 20-1
(Compiled by Rex Gowar in Buenos Aires, Edited by Mitch
- Sports & Recreation
- Oscar Tabarez
- Luis Suarez
- Diego Forlan