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Uruguay vs Portugal, Suarez-Cavani duo against Ronaldo, FIFA World Cup

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Uruguay vs Portugal: Will Suarez-Cavani duo overshadow Ronaldo?

Uruguay vs Portugal (Fisht Stadium, June 30, 11:30 PM IST)

This game is expected to continue the Europe vs South America rivalry at the FIFA World Cup 2018. We know that all four of the South American nations earning direct qualification through CONMEBOL qualifiers are still alive in the tournament and each of them is expected to show their worth against Europe’s best except Brazil who will play CONCACAF giant Mexico.

Uruguay vs Portugal will be a real test for the best forward player against the best central-defender. Cristiano Ronaldo and Diego Godin will continue with their cross-city rivalry at club level, whereas Uruguay’s forward duo Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani would like to give a hard time to the player they envy because they simply haven’t earned their respect in presence of Ronaldo and Messi. It’s their time to show their worth and if they can take the limelight away from five time Ballon d’Or winner, it will be mission accomplished.

We expect to see a good game between the both teams. Uruguay is solid at back and still has a goal to concede in the tournament, but they still lack some creativity in the midfield. Uruguay boss Oscar Tabarez knows that he hasn’t got much option in the midfield and that’s why he has opted for long balls, so that Edinson Cavani and Luis Suarez can play one-two to drag the defenders away before one of them finally takes his shots. This hasn’t been the case up till now, because Le Celeste’s all goals in the tournament have come from dead ball situation and Portugal must avoid conceding free-kicks and corner.

Portugal have never won the FIFA World Cup and the closest them came in recent years is playing 2010 semifinals. But, Selecao haven’t won the Euro before 2016 either, and they made history. They have got some quality players besides Cristiano Ronaldo and Uruguay don’t make the mistake marking only Ronaldo. Ricardo Quaresma scored a brilliant goal against Iran with his outside-of-the-foot and he earned himself the title of the best outside-of-the-foot title at age of 34. There is Bernardo Silva, Andre Silva, Joao Moutinho, Goncalo Guedes, William Carvalho, Pepe, Raphael Guerreiro, and Cedric Soares to play supporting role to Ronaldo as well.

There is not much to talk about their formation. The idea is plain and simple give the ball to Ronaldo, he’ll make runs and defenders will foul him. It’s likely scenario that he’s going to win free-kicks and he may be successful with one of those as he was against Spain. He already has four goals to his name in the tournament and running for Golden Boot awards. He is already lethal in the penalty area and it’s better that Uruguay avoids him running into their penalty-box.

The two time World Champions have a very good chance to lift their third World Cup after 68 years. They have reached the last 16, they’ve got Portugal as their opponent and they can fancy their chances against them. In the quarterfinals, winner of France vs Argentina will be waiting for them, but will they be able to end Ronaldo’s Portugal run in the tournament is a question-mark. Fans want to see a Messi vs Ronaldo match at world stage and FIFA World Cup Russia 2018 may make their wish true if Uruguay bow down against Portugal.

Previous meetings:

They have only met twice before and never played in World Cup finals. As a matter of fact, Uruguay never played a European side at last 16 stage except the 1990 World Cup, when Italy defeated them.

Probable line-ups:

Uruguay: Muslera, Caceres, Gimenez, Godin, Laxalt, Nandez, Vecino, Torriera, Bentancur, Suarez, Cavani

Portugal: Patricio, Cedric, Pepe, Fonte, Guerreiro, William, Silva, Quaresma, Mario, Guedes, Ronaldo

Predictions:

As much as Ronaldo fans will be disappointed, I see a great chance for Uruguay to go forward. Oscar Tabarez may be managing Uruguay for the last time at World Cup. It’s veteran chance to say goodbye on a high note. My back of the mind is saying that his experience will brought something new for Uruguay tonight.

Uruguay to win 3-1 (Cavani, Suarez, and Godin to score for Uruguay, and Ronaldo will get consolation for Portugal)

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