Uruguay primed to quell Ronaldo threat

Cristiano Ronaldo

Cristiano Ronaldo

Uruguay, meanwhile, go into the knockout stages aiming to win their third World Cup, and first since 1950, in Russian Federation.

"We have been preparing for quite a while, for 12 years we have been working with this team, achieving our goals step by step", Tabarez explained.

"I believe Ronaldo is one of the best strikers in the world, he has great potential". "In planning the match, especially focusing on the opponent and considering the level that every player has, it's all relative".

European champions Portugal have had no such difficulties, however, coming through a tight group with Spain, Iran and Morocco to set up a clash against Uruguay. "It doesn't get any better". "You can't turn your back on your collective DNA", he said before the tournament, where they won their three games to finish top of Group A.

Uruguay were the only side to come through the group stage in Russian Federation without letting in a goal.

Uruguay remind me so much of Atletico Madrid. Nearly irrespective of who those wins came against, Uruguay will be on a high as one of only three teams to triumph in all their group games in Russia-Croatia and Belgium are the other two. "Not just Godin. We will have to work collectively in order to try and limit the effect that he can have".

One player who could significantly help Uruguay in trying to contain Ronaldo is defender Jose Maria Gimenez, who missed the group stage finale with a thigh injury.

Uruguay will be looking to win their opening four games at a World Cup tournament for only the second time after 1930 when they won the first ever World Cup. - All five of Uruguay's goals at Russian Federation 2018 have been scored from set pieces (three from corners, 1 from direct free kick and 1 from an indirect free kick). "We have to be focused when it comes to Portugal".

Luis Suarez has scored seven World Cup goals for Uruguay, second only to Oscar Miguez (eight) - Suarez scored twice against South Korea in his only previous World Cup appearance in the round of 16, in 2010.

Ronaldo began the tournament in spectacular fashion, with his stunning free kick completing a hat trick and snatching a 3-3 draw against Spain at Fisht Stadium.

This is Fernando Santos' fourth major tournament in a row as manager. A less impressive narrow win against Saudi Arabia reduced their chance a little but they go into the knockout phase back on that 5% chance of lifting the World Cup.

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