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World Cup

  • June 28, 2014
  • • 21:00
  • • Estadio Jornalista Mário Filho (Maracanã), Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro
  • Referee: B. Kuipers
  • • Attendance: 73804
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Colombia - Uruguay Preview: Rivals clash without Suarez or Falcao

Colombia - Uruguay Preview: Rivals clash without Suarez or Falcao

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Oscar Tabarez's side are reeling from the Liverpool star's four-month ban but their opponents are on form without their own forward talisman

Colombia and Uruguay face each other in the last 16 in a test of which team can cope better without their star striker.

Uruguay are reeling following Luis Suarez’s suspension for biting Giorgio Chiellini in the 1-0 win over Italy in their final Group D game.

From the high of reaching the second round with that narrow victory in Natal, Oscar Tabarez’s side must refocus following the blow of losing Suarez, their main man and most significant scoring threat.

Suarez, who is banned from international football for nine matches, will not even be allowed in the Maracana on Saturday to watch his team-mates try to reach the quarter-final without him.

Uruguay struggled badly without Suarez in the 3-1 defeat to Costa Rica in their World Cup opener, but Edinson Cavani will look to step up and lead the attack, with either Diego Forlan or Gaston Ramirez likely to come in.

The defence stayed rock solid at the back, with matchinner Diego Godin particularly impressive, and they will have to repeat that display to keep out a Colombia team attacking with style and speed.

Even without the injured Radamel Falcao, Colombia have been one of the teams of the tournament and won Group C cruising to victory in all three matches, scoring nine goals in the process.

Colombia have not lost a match since their 2-0 defeat to Uruguay in September last year and come into the game with fresh legs after the likes of James Rodriguez and Mario Yepes were rested from the start in the 4-1 win over Japan last time out.

Yepes is expected to recover from a hamstring injury to start at the Maracana while Jackson Martinez is pushing for a start after scoring two goals against Japan.

Players to watch

J. Rodríguez

Position: Midfielder

Games: 0

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The Monaco star has made sure that Falcao's absence has not been too keenly felt and has been one of the stars of the tournament. He's scored three goals, provided two assists and is full of confidence in the final third.

E. Cavani

Position: Attacker

Games: 0

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Cavani scored a penalty against Costa Rica in Uruguay's opening match - but he has otherwise had a  quiet tournament. The forward supplied Luis Suarez's first goal against England but he must lead the line and score the goals himself if Uruguay are going to progress to the next stage.

Editor's Prediction

Jose Pekerman's side have been playing with speed and invention in attack despite missing Radamel Falcao through injury. They should have too much thrust for a Uruguay team who scraped through the group stage and have shown that they struggle without Luis Suarez.

Last Five Matches

Head To Head

Colombia

Uruguay

Wins
2
0
3
Wins

Betting & Predictions

Reader's Predictions

Colombia COL
Colombia Colombia
Draw
Uruguay URY
Uruguay Uruguay
71%
23%

Top 3 Predictions

Colombia COL
2 - 1
Uruguay URY
Colombia COL
2 - 0
Uruguay URY
Colombia COL
3 - 1
Uruguay URY

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