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Thursday 24 July 2014

World Cup team preview: Uruguay

Published 10/06/2014|15:50

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Uruguay's national soccer team players pose with members of the staff in this picture provided by the Uruguay's Football Association (AUF) in Montevideo on June 4, 2014. The players pictured are (top row, L-R) Jose Maria Jimenez, Edinson Cavani, Diego Godin, Sebastian Coates, Martin Silva, Fernando Muslera, Rodrigo Munoz, Diego Lugano, Martin Caceres, Christian Stuani, Maximiliano Pereira and Gaston Ramirez; (bottom row, L-R) Luis Suarez, Cristian Rodriguez, Diego Forlan, Jorge Fucile, Abel Hernandez, Alvaro Pereira, Egidio Arevalo Rios, Walter Gargano, Alvaro Gonzalez, Nicolas Lodeiro and Diego Perez. REUTERS/Uruguay's Football Association (AUF)/Handout via Reuters (URUGUAY - Tags: SPORT SOCCER WORLD CUP) ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS PICTURE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. REUTERS IS UNABLE TO INDEPENDENTLY VERIFY THE AUTHENTICITY, CONTENT, LOCATION OR DATE OF THIS IMAGE. NO COMMECIAL USE. NO ARCHIVES. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS.  THIS PICTURE IS DISTRIBUTED EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS
Uruguay's national soccer team players pose with members of the staff

We're continuing through our World Cup team previews and today it's Uruguay.

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The Uruguayans were a true global power in football prior to the 70s with World Cup triumphs to their name in 1930 and 1950 respectively.

Their run to the semis at Mexico in 1970 was their last major assault on the world most famous tournament.

Four years ago they announced themselves again on the international stage with a fourth-placed finish in South Africa.

Diego Forlan finished with the Golden Boot in 2010 and their success propelled them to victory in the Copa America in 2011.

After being drawn with England and Italy, one big name is sure to fall at the group stages.

Group D: England, Italy and Costa Rica

Tournament odds: 28/1

How they got here

La Celeste went into the South American qualifying competition for Brazil 2014 as firm favourites to progress but they struggled initially.

Two points from six games in 2012 but their hopes of qualifying in jeopardy but they managed to regroup enough to claim fifth spot in South American qualifying.

They took on Jordan in their intercontinental playoff a goalless draw in Montevideo followed a facile 5-0 win in Jordan and Uruguay advanced.

Key player

Luis Suarez shared the European Golden Boot Award with Cristiano Ronaldo on 31 league goals after missing the start of the season with Liverpool through suspension and is Uruguay's leading light.

Edinson Cavani can be devastating but lacks the guile and composure of Suarez.

Diego Godin will be their rock in central defence.

suarez.jpg 

Something you didn't know about Uruguay

There is a high standard of living in Uruguay. Many think of Uruguay as a third world country when in fact it has many of the same modern infrastructure of first world countries and a literacy rate of over 97pc.

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