2022 World Cup Preview: Uruguay vs South Korea

La Celeste of Uruguay will play against South Korea in the first Group H match of the ongoing World Cup at the Education City Stadium on Thursday at 13:00 GMT.

Uruguay are without veteran coach Oscar Tabarez after 15 years, with Diego Alonso taking over 11 months ago following a poor run of results from the Tabarez-led Sky Blues.

The South Americans were the first country to win the World Cup and are chasing their third trophy since 1950. They have proceeded from the group stage in each of their last three appearances.

Uruguay will have to battle a talent-dominated squad in South Korea in the fixture that has repeated itself in 1990 and 2010.

FORM GUIDE (LAST FIVE MATCHES)

Uruguay have scored a total of 10 goals in the three wins secured from their last five games. South Korea have also lost once against rivals, Japan in their last five games.

URUGUAY

27 September 2022              Canada                 0–2         Uruguay                     Friendly

23 September 2022               Iran                     1–0         Uruguay                     Friendly

11 June 2022                          Uruguay             5–0         Panama                      Friendly

5 June 2022                            United States      0–0         Uruguay                     Friendly

2 June 2022                            Mexico               0–3         Uruguay                     Friendly

 

SOUTH KOREA

11 November 2022             South Korea          1–0         Iceland                 Friendly

27 September 2022            South Korea          1–0         Cameroon            Friendly

23 September 2022            South Korea          2–2         Costa Rica             Friendly

27 July 2022 Japan                3–0         South Korea         EAFF E-1 Football Championship

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24 July 2022 South Korea      3–0         Hong Kong            EAFF E-1 Football Championship

 

HEAD TO HEAD

Both sides will be meeting for the ninth time including two at the World Cup in 1990 and 2010. Uruguay has won six of their previous meetings and managed a draw as well as a loss. Their latest World Cup clash was in 2010 Luis Suarez’s brace propelled Uruguay to the quarter-finals.

 

20 Feb 1982         Korea Republic     2-2          Uruguay                       Nehru Cup

21 Jun 1990          Korea Republic     0-1          Uruguay                       FIFA World Cup

13 Feb 2002         Uruguay               2-1          Korea Republic           International Friendly

08 Jun 2003          Korea Republic     0-2          Uruguay                       International Friendly

24 Mar 2007         Korea Republic     0-2          Uruguay                       International Friendly

26 Jun 2010          Uruguay              2-1          Korea Republic           FIFA World Cup

08 Sep 2014         Korea Republic      0-1         Uruguay                       International Friendly

12 Oct 2018          Korea Republic      2-1         Uruguay                       International Friendly

 

TEAM NEWS

URUGUAY

Uruguay will rely largely on quality attackers at their disposal. Luis Suarez, Darwin Nunez as well as Edinson Cavani and Maxi Lopez are all available while Valverde and Lucas Torreira occupy the midfield for the Sky Blues.

PREDICTED LINE-UP

(4-3-3): Rochet; Varela, Godin, Gimenez, Olivera; Bentancur, Vecino, Valverde; De Arrascaeta, L Suarez, Nunez

SOUTH KOREA

Son Heung-Min was the major doubt for South Korea following his fractured eye socket but the Tottenham Hotspur man may be alright to feature in the Tigers’ opener. Wolverhampton attacker Hwang Hee-chan will also provide an attacking option for Paulo Bento.

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PREDICTED LINE-UP

(4-3-3): Kim Seung-gyu; Kim Moon-hwan, Kim Young-gwon, Kim Min-jae, Kim Jin-su; Jung Woo-Young, Hwang In-beom, Lee Jae-sung; Hwang Hee-chan, Son Heung-min, Hwang Ui-jo