World Cup 2014: Uruguay v England

URU 2 – 1 ENG: So, England effectively go home with a whimper after a defeat at the hands of Uruguay in Sao Paulo. In truth the game was a dour affair that only came alive in the last 15 minutes when both teams succumbed to the air of desperation. One man proved to be the difference, and nobody will be surprised. A superb brace from Liverpool striker Luis Suarez proved to be the glimpse of quality that separated the two sides who offered little creativity all night. In the first half Uruguay enjoyed more of the possession and posed the greater threat with the England forward line too static and failing to have any impact whatsoever in the opening period. A clever ball into the box from Paris Saint Germain forward Edinson Cavani took five England defenders out of the game and a deft header from Suarez guided the ball past Joe Hart. It was just what Uruguay deserved for having more purpose and intent than England in the first half. There was no real lift from England after half time until the introduction of Ross Barkley and Adam Lallana. Sterling was unlucky to be replaced whereas Wellbeck was largely anonymous throughout. Time was running out for a lacklustre England to save themselves. A nice piece of hold up play from Daniel Sturridge resulted in Glen Johnson running through down the right and squaring for Wayne Rooney to tap in his first ever World Cup goal. England stepped up their game and suddenly Uruguay looked like the team that Costa Rica thrashed in the first game. However, schoolboy defending from Gerrard and Cahill allowed a route one kick from Uruguay goalkeeper Muslera to reach on onrushing Suarez to lash the ball past Hart and send the Uruguayans into delirious rapture. It was a disappointing showing from Roy Hodgson’s men who performed well in the defeat to Italy but failed to reach those heights here. The England manager must rue not starting both Lallana and Barkley who have showed signs of real class all through the season. England now come up against a spirited Costa Rica and could well finish bottom of the group. Uruguay have Italy to play to ensure qualification to the Second Round and will hope England do them a favour in beating Costa Rica. But tonight belonged to the conspicuous Luis Suarez.

Suarez breaks English hearts.
Suarez breaks English hearts.

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