Uruguay vs. Colombia: Final score 2-0, Celeste back in the qualification picture

Robert Cianflone

Uruguay are back in contention for an automatic World Cup qualifying place thanks to their victory over Colombia.

Óscar Tabárez's boys are back in with a chance to qualify directly for the World Cup from CONMEBOL qualifying, while Colombia will have to wait another matchday to clinch their place. Uruguay put together a brilliant late surge to win 2-0 on two goals in the game's final 13 minutes.

Both teams were a bit conservative, feeling each other out early. While it wasn't either team's normal style, it made sense. A draw would have seen Colombia qualify for the finals, while Uruguay couldn't afford to lose if they wanted to stay within realistic reach of a top four place. Radamel Falcao had the best chance of the first half in the 26th minute, on a through ball by Fredy Guarin, but he missed his shot just wide of the near post.

Uruguay made two substitutions at the half in an attempt to mix things up, one of which would ultimately prove to be extremely impactful. Christian Stuani entered the game for Alvaro Gonzalez while Walter Gargano replaced Nicolas Lodeiro. Later in the half, Uruguay made another important sub, bringing in Gaston Ramirez for Cristian Rodriguez.

Edinson Cavani netted the ultimate winner in the 77th minute, taking advantage of a sleepy Colombian defense. He slipped in-between the two central defenders to get onto the end of a lofted diagonal by Maxi Pereira and directed the ball downwards, beating David Ospina.

Four minutes later, two substitutes combined to clinch Uruguay's win. Ramriez set up the goal by backing down his defender on the endline, turning and cutting back towards the penalty spot. Stuani was in the perfect spot and side-footed a calm finish into the back of the net to seal victory for the Celeste.

Uruguay: Muslera, M. Pereira, Gimenez, Scotti, Fucile, Rodriguez (Ramirez 71'), Arevalo, Gonzalez (Gargano 45'), Lodeiro (Stuani 45'), Suarez, Cavani

Goals: Cavani (77'), Stuani (81')

Colombia: Ospina, Medina, Yepes, Perea, Zuiniga, Rodriguez, Sanchez (Martinez 86'), Aguilar (Ramirez 80'), Guarin, Gutierrez (Cuadrado 69'), Falcao

Goals: None

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