Luis Suarez may miss England match, says Tabarez

The Uruguay coach casts doubt on whether the Liverpool forward will be fit to return on Thursday, after missing out on his side's shock 3-1 defeat to Costa Rica
Uruguay boss Oscar Tabarez says that Luis Suarez is a major doubt to be fit for their crucial World Cup clash with England on Thursday.

The Celeste were stunned by Costa Rica on Saturday, falling to a 3-1 defeat after Edinson Cavani had given them the lead in the first half.

Despite Suarez warming up on the sidelines in the second half, he was not sent on to help save the day as Uruguay's defence crumbled and the goals started piling in for the Concacaf nation.

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Tabarez revealed that the Liverpool striker demanded to be part of the squad, despite not being fit to play, but has doubts as to whether his star man will fully recover to feature against the Three Lions from the start.

"Luis Suarez is no longer injured because he wouldn’t have been a substitute if he was," the coach told reporters. "He has gone through the phases that we have foreseen in his recovery and we will have to see if he can find fitness.

"As we said from the beginning, if he meets the challenges, we will see how he can get into the team - and at which point. For us, he is a key player. He has great potential and has a lot to contribute to the team.

"We need him to reach a point where he can play in a match. It was he who demanded to be on the bench, not watching from the stands. It would have been very difficult for him to play, though.

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"He was a serious doubt. You need to have a certain fitness level - you need to be able to reach the highest standard. There were certain concerns over his fitness and it was very improbable that he would play. We will see about England."

Costa Rica's win over the 2010 World Cup semi-finalists was the tournament's first major shock and Tabarez is under no illusions as to how important beating England now is if his side want to reach the knockout stage.

"Costa Rica took advantage of the opportunities they had in the second half," he conceded. "It was a very tough blow but we did not underestimate Costa Rica.

"We conceded goals that we do not usually concede but we have to accept the result. We will have to recover in the next game."