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World Cup Qualifying Preview: Peru - Uruguay

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World Cup Qualifying Preview: Peru - Uruguay
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World Cup Qualifying Preview: Peru - Uruguay

Uruguay welcomed eight of its European-based players into the squad on Monday ahead of the weekend’s World Cup qualifier in Peru.

Among those who arrived were Diego Godin, Alvaro Pereira and Diego Perez as Oscar Tabarez prepares his side for the crucial match in Lima.

Uruguay currently occupies the fifth spot, which would leave the team having to compete in a two legged playoff with a qualifier from the Asian section - Jordan or Uzbekistan.

Tabarez has one of the world’s strongest forward lines at his disposal with the trio of Edinson Cavani, Diego Forlan and Luis Suarez all available.

The coach should benefit from all three being fully focused, with Cavani having moved to Paris Saint-Germain early in the summer and Suarez still at Liverpool despite speculation about a move during the transfer window.

Uruguay will be hoping for a repeat of the reverse fixture, when goals from Suarez, Maxi Pereira, Cristian Rodriguez and Sebastian Eguren handed them a 4-2 victory.

Tabarez acknowledged the enormity of the game as the qualification process heads towards a conclusion.

“Victory will be a great result for us,” he said. “If it’s a draw, that benefits us. If we win, I think we will draw a significant advantage because after that there are only three games left.”

Peru currently sits seventh in the standings, just two points behind Uruguay with four games remaining.

Yordy Reyna and Carlos Zambrano were the last players to join up with Sergio Markarian’s squad in Lima, and Reyna was quick to underline his willingness to help the team.

“This game we have to win because we are playing at home,” he said. “I will contribute to the team when they need me.”

Winger Paolo Hurtado, of Pacos de Ferreira, echoed the sentiments of Reyna.

“The match against Uruguay will be very difficult but we will go above and beyond for the three points,” he said. “I feel great. If I play or not, that will be determined by the coach, but I always come prepared to play for Peru.”

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