Uruguay is currently ranked fifth in the FIFA rankings and finished fourth in the 2010 World Cup. Coach Tabarez has said. "In football there is also a first world and a third world. We in Uruguay are not among the powers, not even in the South American region, and I think that's the reason we find the qualifiers so hard."
With Uruguay as reigning Copa America holders they enter into a division hosting Italy, the UEFA EURO 2012 runners-up and England, who reached Brazil without a defeat to their name. While Costa Rica will enter as outsiders, those in the football world will tell you, Los Ticos cannot be taken lightly.
The interesting aspect about Uruguay is their constant insistence by their coach Oscar Washington Tabarez and how he does not rate his side among the elite in football nations. With one of the world’s deadliest strikers in Luis Suarez and his counterpart and highly-rated striker partner Edinson Cavani, it’s hard to imagine the boss feels less than eager to place his team among the top teams. Perhaps there is a bit of reverse psychology on the part of Tabarez. If he manages to keep the momentum low key and his players feet on the ground they might show they can compete with the first world elites like England and Italy.
While it’s true they lack a consistent defense, it’s only a matter of time before the rest of the team realizes they are a credible force. In recent times they’ve tried to face the elite national teams and in some circumstances have shown they can play as equals whatever the result.
The match to watch will be the highly anticipated Italian team. The two teams, almost exactly a year ago, will meet once more. This time Tabarez is hoping for a different outcome. After playing to a 2-2 draw and losing on penalty kicks, Tabarez knows under the coaching of Cesare Prandelli, possession will be key. No doubt it would be a thrilling victory to defeat the Italian National Team.
Group D could be a very exciting group to keep tabs on. There is every chance Uruguay could ensure they are considered a threat and even a qualification decider. Remember 2010?