Anyway, thanks for sticking with me. Ta-ra.
- 2nd Half
- 1st Half
Uruguay - Saudi Arabia
World Cup - 20 June 2018
World Cup – Follow the Football match between Uruguay and Saudi Arabia live with Eurosport. The match starts at 17:00 on 20 June 2018. Our live coverage lets you follow all the key moments as they happen.
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That was horrendous. I cannot state that strongly enough. But Uruguay-Russia will be much better, and those two will have to play Spain and Portugal, most likely, at which point things will change.
Full-time: Uruguay 1-0 Saudi Arabia. URUGUAY QUALIFY FOR THE LAST 16!
Uruguay win a corner, which Torreira knocks short to Suarez. He lives for these moments, but in protecting the ball is fouled, only for the ref to give the free-kick against him.
Yasser has shown a bit of moxie, and he cuts in from the left, driving a low shot that Varela blocks ... but also imparts a deflection ... which takes all the pace off the effort, and Muslera holds easily enough.
There shall be four added minutes.
Salem crosses deep to the back post, too deep, so that when Kanno heads for goal, he's too far out to mither Muslera.
But what's this! Osama shoots, Varela blocks, and Saudi have a corner! They send everyone forward bar the keeper....
Uruguay are dictating now, and Laxalt swings the leg at a cross which arrives at Suarez quickly. He has a first-time swipe, but gets only a piece of it and the ball slides away to the side.
Uruguay keep it at the back, AND SAUDI ARE SITTING OFF THEM! I give up, really I do.
Uruguay get it downfield and Cavani picks it up on halfway; with no one in support, he sticks it into space and pegs after it, beating two defenders in the process. Osama then cuts him off ... but slips, allowing Cavani to spin and shoot, but Alowais is out to narrow the angle and block to safety.
The ball bounces around outside the Saudi box. There are two attackers inside it.
"Patient again from Saudi Arabia," says Steve Bower in commentary, as they tip-tap about outside the box. They're going out of the World Cup in six minutes. Perhaps the time for patience has gone.
Final change for Uruguay: Nandez replaces Sanchez. I'm certain that this will make all the difference.
In nine minutes we will be free.
Torreira moves across the face of the Saudi box and shoots from 20 yards; the effort is going way wide until Cavani throws himself at it and forces it merely just wide.
I wonder, has a side ever played as badly as Uruguay for two World Cup wins?
Final change for Saudi: off goes Hatan, on comes Alsahlawi.
According to Phil Neville, Uruguay fans only care about winning and "progressing further than they ever have before". Uruguay have won the World Cup twice.
Nice from Cavani, sashaying by a couple of defenders outside the box before laying off for Suarez, who flips a return into the box. But he gets too much on it and Alowais claims.
Change for Saudi: Kannno, who has a bit of lank to him, replaces Hatan.
Saudi knock the ball around. Then they lose possession. Might stick that on the clipboard.
It's not even like Uruguay have the pace to nail them on the break.
Surely it's time Saudi stuck some men in the box?
There've been some terrible games in this World Cup, and we're currently watching another. A goal for Saudi would make things interesting, but it's hard to discern if they even know what one is.
He can, putting it into the middle, but Caceres heads over the top.
Trickery from Suarez just outside the box, down its right-hand side, so Salem pulls him down. Can Sanchez do better with his delivery this time?
Salman swings it in, but Suarez is there close to the near post, and he heads away.
Saudi break and Gimenez deals ... or appears to deal, because Fahad then does him on the outside so is pulled down. Free-kick Saudi, and this is better than a corner....
Saudi are making this tasty, and Yasser leaves the knee in to catch Sanchez when he crosses from the right; free-kick, which he duly whams against the one-man wall. Forreal.
Uruguay break via quick free-kick from Caceres, but Cavani finds himself alone on the left so waits for support to arrive, then steps inside and curls a lovely cross for Sanchez on the far side of the box ... only for him to send his falling header well over the top.
Lovely from Sanchez, moving down the right and slinging over a beautiful cross which Laxalt only just misses, on the pelt and on the stretch.
Oscar Tabarez isn't happy with what's he's seeing though, removing Rodriguez and Vecino to introduce Laxalt and Torreiras, reportedly a target for Arsenal and whose old fella is in the ground as a radio commentator.
Uruguay look so much less comfortable when they have to make the running than when they're under the cosh. I'm not sure there's ever been a defensive team more fun to watch than Diego Simeone's Atletico, and Uruguay have two of his kingpins.
Yasser knocks back to Alowais, who panics and kicks into touch. He's had better games.
Suarez runs and Osama and tries to flick the ball between his legs. When it doesn't quite work, he tries to run through him, Osama goes down easily, and the ref deduces a foul.
Suarez tries to bend the ball around the wall but catches its outermost midriff and Alowais is forced to beat away unconvincingly.
Sanchez hurls himself to the ground when Ali challenges, and Uruguay have a free-kick, 25 or so yards out, pretty central. Suarez fancies it...
A poor first touch from Varela, words that will not surprise those who watch Manchester United, forces him to concede an unnecessary corner. Saudi take it short, looking to play their way in - a smart move, given Uruguay's centre-backs - but nothing comes of it anyroad up.
Football is magic.
Once more into the breach...
Uruguay did not show very much at all, but Saudi made an absolute mess of defending a corner, which is why we are where we are.
Half-time: Uruguay 1-0 Saudi Arabia
Saudi counter and Salem slides a ball in behind Varela, looking for Fahad. But Godin is wise to the ruse, coming across and inserting his body right in the road. Fahad isn't happy, but what can you do.
There'll be two additional minutes.
FinallyHussain is ready, and replaces Taiseer.
While Taiseer receives treatment we see a replay of argy-bargy between Suarez and Yasser, who had a little nibble at him when grounded after a challenge. Hopefully it simmers and festers...
Taiseer has diddled his hamstring stretching into a tackle with Varela, and will be replaced.
Suarez isolates Yasser and gets himself into a "foot race" (as opposed to a flying face). But his pace has gone, and he loses.
Things they never thought they'd say: England are a real breath of fresh air in this tournament, a team that plays with tempo and intensity.
Cesc Fabregas has been an excellent signing for the BBC. This is more interesting than this game (though not, of course, more interesting than me talking about this game).
There's not a whole lot coming to pass here. Alburayk just humped in a cross from the right, that flew over the by-line on the other side of the goal.
Salem scissors Vecino in centrefield, but swerves a booking.
I quite like goals from set-pieces. Not this one, especially, but Kane's and Quintero's, for example, evidence thought and practise. And set-piece goals do not militate against open-play goals.
Ouch! Etayf skips through the back of Cavani, landing on his achilles. It looks a real sair yin, but Phil Neville, renowned tough guy, says it's nothing.
Chance for Saudi! Salem goes down the left and crosses; in the middle, Godin can't win the header, and with Caceres dreaming, Hatan steals in only to bang the bal over the bar! Uruguay have been warned!
Uruguay have more zip to their play now, but you fear for them if they've to play Spain. I guess their two centre-backs are as good a partnership as there is, but I've no idea how their midfield will cope.
Hatan moves across the face of the Uruguay box and cracks a left-footed shot that Muslera is forced to turn over the top. The corner comes to nothing.
Suarez gets on the ball in the box and finds Cavani, who batters a instashot, but Osama is there to block. Excellent defending.
Surely Uruguay will pick it up from here, because they've been weak until now.
GOAL! Uruguay 1-0 Saudi Arabia (Suarez) The 100th cap is marked with a goal! Over comes the corner and out comes Alowais for a flap; he gets nowhere near the ball, and Suarez is right there to tap home on the volley. His marker is, well, em, um, I don't know.
Uruguay are coming. Cavani snaps a pass into the path of Rodriguez, nashing down the left, he catches up with it, just, and screws back a cross which forces a corner.
Much, much better from Uruguay, countering at pace and moving the ball between Rodriguez, Suarez and Cavani. But when Saurez gets possession outside the box, he opts to slide wide instead of drive at the Saudi defence and Cavani can only shoot into shins to win a corner, It comes to nothing.
Godin hits a long diag at Rodriguez, who chucks out a leg, but can neither control nor keep the ball in. Uruguay have done nothing save that blocked Suarez shot.
It's not something you usually say about a Uruguay team, but there's a proper lack of intensity about this lot. Perhaps an extra midfielder would help them.
A poor touch from Salem allows Suarez to nick off with the ball on halfway, so Salem hacks him down, avoiding a booking. The resultant free-kick goes short and Bentancur lifts a pass down the line for Caceres, whose low cross is a little behind Cavani, and he lashes over the bar from eight yards.
Uruguay, on the other hand, have made an exceedingly inauspicious start.
This has been a decent start from Saudi. They totally bottled the Russia game, but they're getting in amongst it here.
Lazy crouching imo.
Vecino chucks a leg at Hatan, 25 yards out and just left of centre. A mini-barney develops over who'll take the free-kick and Al-Faraj wrestles the ball off Alburayk, but Alburayk has the shot at goal, the ball flicking the wall and going behind for a corner which comes to nothing.
Saudi aren't just sitting in, but looking to get the ball forward whenever they can. The questions, though, are whether they'll commit numbers into the box, and whether their defence can stand up to Suarez and Cavani.
This is a great shot.
Uruguay are settling themselves into the game, passing the ball pretty slowly while Saudi sit in formatiion. But then one superb long, er, diag from Betancur sees Rodriguez knock down for Suarez! He takes a touch, the spanks a shot goalwards, only for Alburayk to block immediately. Lovely stuff all round.
We're off, and Saudi go long. The ball goes behind, and Uruguay build from the back.
Suarez looks kind of frantic. I'm not sure if that's a good thing or a bad thing.
The Saudi players give it some. We're good to go.
Uruguay's has a long into, I am the resurrection-style, and is a jaunty number with some great shouting at the end. I'm amped.
Out they come!
The players are tunnelled. Didier Drogba thinks Saudi Uruguay will win.
The flags of the two countries have been unfurled. Exciting!
Uruguay, incidentally, will not want to win narrowly here. If they do, they'll probably need to beat Russia to avoid Spain, who you'd expect to outscore Portugal against Iran and Morocco. And, wondrous though Ronaldo is, you'd rather try stopping him than get mugged off by the entire Spain team.
You may have been wondering...
Last time I was in the area, Uruguay was play to go for cheap minidisc players. Maybe it still is.
If Saudi can play as well at they played in friendlies against Italy and Germany, then they can give Uruguay some aggravation this afternoon. It's hard to see how they can improve as much as they'd need to, given how awful they were last week, but as we learn time and again, football doesn't work like that.
In the stands, though, things are warming up nicely.
Looking at the way the teams are likely to play, Uruguay will set up in their usual 4-4-2, and look to put the ball in the box for their strikers, while Saudi will look to flood the midfield and slow the game down with lots of short passes. I'll level with you: I'm not certain we're going to see a classic here.
So if Uruguay win this, they go through with Russia; the final game will then determine who wins the group. If they draw, then Saudi will have to beat Egypt and hope Uruguay lose to Russia, with a goal-swing of four.
Uruguay, meanwhile, make changes in wide midfeld: Out go Nandez and Arrascaeta, in come Sanchez and Rodriguez.
So, Saudi Arabia make four changes from the team that lost to Russia so miserably: Alowais replaces Abdullah in goal, in defence Omar loses out to Ali, Yahia is replaced in midfield by Hatan, and in attack, Fahad takes the place of Alsahlawi.
And for those less fluent in Arabic than I...
I say that, but for the last year or so, it's been pretty hard to escape the impression that Suarez is done at the top level. During Uruguay-Egypt, Phil Neville said that that was the worst he'd seem him play "for a long, long time”, but all that told us was that he can't have seen him play "for a long, long time” He disappears from games, doesn't look sharp, and seems to have lost the mongrel that defined him at his best. But he should still have plenty enough for this lot.
Afternoon all. I wish there was more football to watch, how I wish. Well, here some is! Uruguay will be on a buzz after a thumping late header gave them a win over Egypt, while Saudi Arabia can't possibly be as bad as their performance against Russia suggested. And if they are, I shudder at the thought of what Suarez and Cavani are going to do to their defence.