Uruguay national football team

Uruguay
Shirt badge/Association crest
Nickname(s)La Celeste (The Sky Blues)
“Los Charrúas”
AssociationAUF
ConfederationCONMEBOL (South America)
Head coachÓscar Tabárez
CaptainDiego Godín
Most capsMaxi Pereira (125)
Top scorerLuis Suárez (53)
Home stadiumEstadio Centenario, Montevideo
FIFA codeURU
First colours
Second colours
FIFA ranking
Current14 Increase 3 (7 June 2018)
Highest2 (July 2011)
Lowest55 (December 1998)
Elo ranking
Current7 Increase 4 (9 July 2018)
Highest1 (Various dates 1920–31)
Lowest48 (5 September 1979)
First international
 Uruguay 2–3 Argentina 
(Montevideo, Uruguay; 16 May 1901)[note 1][3]
Biggest win
 Uruguay 9–0 Bolivia 
(Lima, Peru; 9 November 1927)
Biggest defeat
 Uruguay 0–6 Argentina 
(Montevideo, Uruguay; 20 July 1902)
World Cup
Appearances13 (first in 1930)
Best resultChampions (1930, 1950)
Copa América
Appearances45 (first in 1916)
Best resultChampions (1916, 1917, 1920, 1923, 1924, 1926, 1935, 1942, 1956, 1959, 1967, 1983, 1987, 1995, 2011)
Confederations Cup
Appearances2 (first in 1997)
Best resultFourth Place (1997, 2013)

The Uruguay national football team represents Uruguay in international association football and is controlled by the Uruguayan Football Association, the governing body for football in Uruguay. The current head coach is Óscar Tabárez. The Uruguayan team is commonly referred to as La Celeste (The Sky Blue).The Uruguayan team won the 2011 Copa América. They have won the Copa América 15 times, being the team that has won the tournament on most occasions. The team has won the FIFA World Cup twice, including the first World Cup in 1930 as hosts, defeating Argentina 4–2 in the final. They won their second title in 1950, upsetting host Brazil 2–1 in the final match, which received an attendance higher than any football match ever.

They have won the Gold Medals in football at the Summer Olympics twice, in 1924 and 1928 recognized by FIFA as World Championships, before the creation of the World Cup. Uruguay also won the 1980 Mundialito, a tournament among former World Cup champions. In total, Uruguay have won 20 official titles, a world record for the most international titles held by any country.

Their success is amplified by the fact that the nation has a very small population of around 3.4 million inhabitants (2011 est.). Uruguay is by far the smallest country in the world to have won a World Cup in terms of population, 1.75 million inhabitants in 1930. The second-smallest country, by population, to have won the World Cup is Argentina with a population of nearly 28 million people in 1978. Uruguay is also the smallest country ever to win any World Cup medals; only six FIFA member nations with a currently smaller population than Uruguay's have ever qualified to any World Cup: Northern Ireland (three times), Slovenia (twice), Wales, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago and Iceland.

History

Uruguay before its first match (official) v Argentina, July 1902
The team that won its second Gold Medal at the 1928 Summer Olympics

In 1901, Uruguay played against Argentina in their first ever match, a close contest won by Argentina 3–2. Prior to 1916, Uruguay played more than 30 matches, of which all but one were against Argentina. The inaugural Copa America provided Uruguay with more varied opposition. Victories over Chile and Brazil, along with a tie against Argentina, enabled Uruguay to win the tournament. The following year Uruguay hosted the competition, and retained the title by winning every game. The 1919 Copa América saw Uruguay's first defeat in the tournament, a 1–0 defeat in a playoff with Brazil which went to two periods of extra time, the longest Copa América match in history.[citation needed]

In 1924, the Uruguay team traveled to Paris to become the first South American team to compete in the Olympic Games. In contrast to the physical style of the European teams of the era, Uruguay played a style based around short passes,[6] and won every game, defeating Switzerland 3–0 in the gold medal match. In the 1928 Summer Olympics, Uruguay went to Amsterdam to defend their title, again winning the gold medal after defeating Argentina 2–1 in the replay of the final (the first match was a draw after extra time). FIFA assumed the responsibility of the organization of the Football Games to be played by FIFA rules and the tournaments would be recognized as World Championships. It only happened twice (1924/1928 Summer Olympics Games) until the creation of its own FIFA World Championship, the FIFA World Cup, in 1930.[7]

The team that beat Argentina in the final match of the 1930 FIFA World Cup to win Uruguay's first FIFA World Cup

Following the double Olympic triumph, Uruguay was chosen as the host nation for the first World Cup, held in 1930, the centenary of Uruguay's first constitution. During the World Cup, Uruguay won all its matches, and converted a 1–2 half-time deficit to a 4–2 victory against Argentina at the Estadio Centenario. Due to the refusal of some European teams to participate in the first World Cup, the Uruguayan Football Association urged other countries to reciprocate by boycotting the 1934 World Cup played in Italy. For the 1938 World Cup, France was chosen as host, contrary to a previous agreement to alternate the championships between South America and Europe, so Uruguay again refused to participate.

The team that beat Brazil in the decisive match of the 1950 FIFA World Cup to win Uruguay's second FIFA World Cup

Uruguay again won the World Cup in 1950, beating hosts Brazil in one of the biggest upsets in World Cup history. The decisive match was at the Maracanã Stadium in Brazil. Uruguay came from behind to beat the host nation in a match which would become known as the Maracanazo. Many Brazilians had to be treated for shock after the event, such was the surprise of Uruguay's victory.[8]

Rodolfo Rodríguez raises the Mundialito trophy won in January 1981

After their fourth-place finish in the 1954 World Cup, the team had mixed performances and after the fourth-place finish in 1970, their dominance, quality and performance dropped. They were no longer a world football power and failed to qualify for the World Cup on five occasions in the last nine competitions. They reached an all-time low and at one time ranked 76th in the FIFA World Rankings.

In 2010, however, a new generation of footballers, led by Luis Suárez, Diego Forlán and Edinson Cavani, formed a team considered to be Uruguay's best in the last four decades, catching international attention after finishing fourth in the 2010 World Cup. Uruguay opened the tournament with a goalless draw against France, followed by defeats of South Africa (3–0) in and Mexico (1–0) respectively, finishing at the top of their group with seven points. In the second round, they played South Korea, defeating them 2–1 with star striker Luis Suárez scoring a brace and earning Uruguay a spot in the quarter-finals for the first time since 1970. Against Ghana, the match finished 1–1, forcing the game into extra-time. Both sides had their chances at extra time but Suárez blocked the ball with his hand in the penalty area, earning Suárez a red card and earning Uruguay universal scorn. Ghana striker Asamoah Gyan missed the subsequent penalty, forcing the game to go into penalties where Uruguay would win 4–2, sending them into the last four. They played the Netherlands in the semifinals but were beaten 3–2. For the third-place match, they played Germany, again losing 3–2. This placed Uruguay in fourth place for the tournament, their best result in 40 years. Diego Forlan was awarded the Player of The Tournament.

Uruguay - Saudi Arabia match at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia

A year later, they won the Copa America for the first time in 16 years and broke the record for the most successful team in South America. Luis Suárez ended up as the Player of The Tournament In the 2014 World Cup Uruguay was placed in Group D alongside Costa Rica, England, and Italy. They were upset by Costa Rica in the opening match, losing 3–1 despite taking the lead in the first half. They rebounded with a 2–1 victory over England, in which Suárez scored a brace right after coming back from an injury, and a 1–0 victory over Italy, placing them second in their group and earning a spot in the last 16. During the match against Italy, forward Luis Suárez bit Italian defender Giorgio Chiellini on his left shoulder. Two days after the match, the FIFA Disciplinary Committee banned Suárez for nine international matches, the longest such ban in World Cup history, exceeding the eight-match ban handed to Italy's Mauro Tassotti for breaking the nose of Spain's Luis Enrique in 1994.[9][10][11] Suárez was also banned from taking part in any football-related activity (including entering any stadium) for four months and fined CHF100,000 (approx. £65,700/82,000/US$119,000).[9][10][12] In the round of 16, Uruguay played Colombia but were beaten 2–0, eliminating them from the tournament.

At the 2015 and 2016 Copa América, Uruguay, missing banned striker Luis Suárez, were eliminated in the quarter-finals and group stages respectively.

Other Languages
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Зборная Ўругваю па футболе
oʻzbekcha/ўзбекча: Urugvay milliy futbol terma jamoasi