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FIFA World Cup 2018, Uruguay vs Saudi Arabia, Highlights: As It Happened

News18.com | June 20, 2018, 10:46 PM IST
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After sneaking past Egypt in their World Cup opener with a stoppage-time winner, Uruguay will field a veteran side containing seven players aged 31 or over against Saudi Arabia as they seek a victory that would seal their place in the last 16.
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Jun 20, 2018 10:26 pm (IST)
Jun 20, 2018 10:24 pm (IST)

Match Ends: That's the final whistle folks and Uruguay have entered the knockouts courtesy of this nervy 1-0 win over their Asian rivals. As for Saudi Arabia, they have to head back home after back to back losses.

Jun 20, 2018 10:19 pm (IST)

Chance: Kanno couldn't generate any power from his header which he connected from a corner. 90 minutes have been played in Rostov now and four minutes have been added on. The Saudis are giving it all at the moment without any reward whatsoever.

Jun 20, 2018 10:15 pm (IST)

Chance: Edinson Cavani almost score the second goal of the day but his effort was saved well by the Saudi keeper. A defensive lapse meant Cavani had the ball in the D and he had almost no defender near him. However, his shot in the 85th minute was expertly saved by the keeper.

Jun 20, 2018 10:08 pm (IST)

10 minutes left to be played in the match now and it is upto the Saudis to conjure something now. If it stays like this, they will crash out of the competition and Uruguay will progress into the next round.

Jun 20, 2018 10:05 pm (IST)

Uruguay haven't been anywhere close to their best in the competition thus far and after a rather indifferent performance in the first match agains Egypt, they have once again put a very meek show against Saudi Arabia. But despite that, they could have 6 points by the end of this match and will become the first team to enter kncokouts. 

Jun 20, 2018 9:59 pm (IST)

Chance: After a foul on Suarez, the Uruguayans restart play quickly and find Cavani streaking up the left side. The striker is alone for a while, but after a bit picks out Sanchez with an incredible cross to the back post, but the midfielder is unable to put his header on goal. 20 minutes of regulation time left and the score still is in favour of Uruguay.

Jun 20, 2018 9:53 pm (IST)

The Saudis continuing to do what worked well for them in the second part of the first half – this time, a counterattack is cut short by an offside by Fahad. Uruguay are struggling at the moment. Now, Saudis get a free kick on the left flank. The free-kick hits one of the defenders inside the box and the danger ends once again.

Jun 20, 2018 9:49 pm (IST)

Substitution: Torriera is now making his way on to the pitch as he replaces Vecino. The young mid-fielder is on the verge of joining Arsenal if reports are to believed. He will want to put on a good show today for country and help his team progress. Laxalt also comes in place of Rodriguez.

Jun 20, 2018 9:44 pm (IST)
Jun 20, 2018 9:40 pm (IST)

Chance: Suarez had the chance to double his and his team's tally after Uruguay were awarded a free kick almost 30 yards from the goal. However, his shot took a deflection from the wall and was saved acrobatically by the keeper. 51 mins have been played and Uruguay lead 1-0.

Jun 20, 2018 9:38 pm (IST)

Even though Uruguay had less of the ball than their adversaries in the first half, their attacks have been much more dangerous and they've been able to find space on the wings to attempt some dangerous crosses. Suarez won't mind at all that the goal was handed to him, and he'll hope that it'll be the one to boost his confidence and get him up and running in the World Cup.

Jun 20, 2018 9:33 pm (IST)

The players are returning onto the pitch and Uruguay will look to consolidate their position in the match. They lead 1-0 but the Saudis showed in the half that they won't be pushed away like their first match. 

Jun 20, 2018 9:19 pm (IST)
Jun 20, 2018 9:18 pm (IST)

Half-time: Referee blows the whistle as we head into a short break now with Uruguay leading 1-0. The Saudis did well in the half but one lapse in concentration cost them a goal. Overall, not a good outing for Uruguay so far as despite taking the lead, they haven't played well according to their own high standards.

Jun 20, 2018 9:15 pm (IST)

Even though Saudi Arabia have had most of the ball, they're still having a hard time breaking down the Uruguayan defense at times, and have had to resort to long shots. Few minute to go in the first half and it seems that Uruguay will go into the break with a slender lead.

Jun 20, 2018 9:10 pm (IST)

Chance: Alshahrani receives the ball on the left side of the pitch and whips in a long cross that goes all the way to the back post, where it finds Hatan. The Saudi forward is all alone but is still unable to put the ball on goal, as it goes over the top of the net. Promising signs for the Saudis thought!

Jun 20, 2018 9:02 pm (IST)

Chance: Glorious oppurtunity for Saudi Arabia to hit back in the match but they miss to put the ball into the back of the net. Hattan Sultan Bahbir came running inside the D but when he met the ball with his left foot, it sailed over the bar and the chance was gone. 30 minutes played Uruguay lead 1-0.

Jun 20, 2018 8:58 pm (IST)

Stat Attack: Suarez was already Uruguay's all-time leading scorer before this clash and now he has scored in his 100th appearance as well. Suarez now has 52 international goals to his name and he has now put his team firmly in control of progressing into the next round.

Jun 20, 2018 8:55 pm (IST)
Jun 20, 2018 8:54 pm (IST)

GOLAZO: Luis Suarez has given Uruguay the lead after converting from a corner. The ball fell kindly for the striker at the far end of the post and Suarez netted a goal with the easiest of finishes in the 23rd minute of the match. 

Jun 20, 2018 8:52 pm (IST)

Chance: Al-Muwallad found space near the edge of the box and he played himself in with the help of quick feet. He unleashed a shot but the angle was too extreme and the goalkeeper caught the meet shot in the end.

Jun 20, 2018 8:48 pm (IST)

18 minutes have been played in the first half and there hasn't been any clear cut chances for either of the two sides. The closest that Uruguay have come is when Cavani hit the ball over the crossbar in the 12th minute.

Jun 20, 2018 8:44 pm (IST)

Chance: Good chance for Uruguay in the 12th minute of the game as Careces sends in a brilliant cross from the left and Cavani meets it inside the D but his shot flies over the bar. The match locked at 0-0 currently.

Jun 20, 2018 8:40 pm (IST)

Both teams have had solid possession to this point, and although the Uruguayans have had the more threatening attacks, the Saudis do not look afraid to move the ball with pace against the Uruguayan midfield and defense.

Jun 20, 2018 8:39 pm (IST)
Jun 20, 2018 8:38 pm (IST)

Saudi Arabia are trying to fight it out against Uruguay. They have made a couple of more penetrations in the opposition half but haven't been that effective. And Saudi has a free kick outside the box. That has been blocked well. 

Jun 20, 2018 8:34 pm (IST)

Saudi have the first penetration of the match but a short-lived one. Uruguay gets the ball back quite easily. Uruguay looks quite relaxed at the moment. That speaks volumes of their confidence.

Jun 20, 2018 8:32 pm (IST)

KICK OFF: Uruguay start off the proceedings and maintain a good possession. They enter the opposition half only to move back. They know for sure that a team like Saudi will crunmble under pressure. And suddenly Suarez is in action and takes a shot from outside the box that is blocked well.

Jun 20, 2018 8:25 pm (IST)

The players are now making their way out on the pitch for their respective national anthems. If Uruguay win this match, they will all but secure their place in the next round. While as for Saudi Arabia, a loss for them will see them head home.

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FIFA World Cup 2018, Uruguay vs Saudi Arabia, Highlights: As It Happened
Twitter/ #World Cup Russia 2018

With the hour mark approaching against Egypt and his side struggling to create chances, coach Oscar Tabarez removed young wingers Nahitan Nandez and Giorgian De Arrascaeta, aged 22 and 24 respectively, replacing them with hardened veterans Cristian Rodriguez, 32, and Carlos Sanchez, 33. The South Americans instantly had more strength and power down the flanks and created a string of chances before defender Jose Gimenez rose to head in an arching cross from a free kick from Sanchez to snatch all three points.

Tabarez confirmed that he will reward the evergreen wingers with starting berths against Saudi Arabia, the second lowest ranked team in the tournament who were thrashed 5-0 by Russia in their opener. "It's not about being young or experienced it's due to the needs of the team for this game, and according to my information this is the line-up which will best suit us," Tabarez told a news conference on Tuesday. Rodriguez will make his 107th appearance for Uruguay on Wednesday, prolific striker Luis Suarez will rack up a century of appearances for the national team and goalkeeper Fernando Muslera will reach 99 games. Muslera will also tie Ladislao Mazurkiewicz as the player to have made the most appearances for Uruguay at a World Cup.

Tabarez's preference for old hands Sanchez and Rodriguez, who play their football in Mexico and Uruguay respectively, may raise questions about the next generation of players in the squad, which is comprised of 10 players aged 30 or more, double the number that reached the semi-finals in 2010. But the coach said his side's wealth of experience was a strength. "I have a lot of confidence in the team I'm going to put out tomorrow, they have a lot of experience," added the 72-year-old, who has coached Uruguay since 2006. "If I've learned one thing from being at the World Cup it's that anything can happen. In South Africa, we used all of our players apart from the reserve goalkeepers. And just because I took some players off in the first game it doesn't mean their tournament is over.

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