Uruguay experienced in tough situations

Energy management is going to be the key to concentration in the vital last 20 minutes and how players react to this pressure cooker environment.

Uruguay experienced in tough situations


For many of the England players this is new and nobody knows how they will handle it but for Uruguay they have been there before. Uruguay struggled in qualification and it looked as if Venezuela were going to make it but Uruguay when the chips were down started winning home and away. They beat Venezuela away and won 3 of the next 4 games including a defeat of Argentina to put them into a play-ff just to get here.

Uruguay have a history of getting out of tight situations so while Diego Forlan appreciates this will be a tough game the Uruguayans have the experience of handling these situations, England don't. To not be at a World Cup in your own continent would have been unthinkable for Uruguay who won the first ever World Cup, now they are they do not intend going home early.

“Of course it won’t be easy, but this team has been together for a long time and we know what we're capable of. We have to do our work on the pitch, play as we know how, and I believe that will be sufficient to achieve the results we need.

“In the dressing room we were sad after the game against Costa Rica. But we know this is just the beginning and that the rest of story is there to be written.”

As I pointed out in England Expects - The last 20 minutes will be key late in the game is the danger time, the deciding time. How the England full-backs have man managed their energy levels is crucial, Uruguay know how to manage theirs, this is new territory for many of ours including Leighton Baines, Phil Jagielka and Gary Cahill.

Edinson Cavani believes Uruguay know how to produce their best during this vital period when the clock is running down, when the minutes are running out.

“It’s true, people say that a lot about Uruguay. We have gone through a lot and have always survived. Play-offs, difficult matches, extreme situations – and here we are. This generation has won almost everything and knows how to do so."

“Keeping our concentration will be key. We cannot make mistakes because another defeat would be too much against rivals of this quality. But I believe it’s exactly that which will allow us to quickly regain our morale. We face England and then Italy, not just any old teams, and we have to beat them.”

Will Uruguay keep their concentration and how will England's young guns react to the pressure and the unfamiliar conditions? Some players react to FA Cup finals, for some the occasion is too much. You don't know who until the game is underway. England won't know who is going to react and who is going to have a poor game. This is why they play, these games, the all or nothing.

We'll see tonight.

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