Teams News, Key men and Prediction ahead of the world cup clash between England and Uruguay in Sao Paulo.
Raheem Sterling is likely to move out to the wing as Roy Hodgson looks to accommodate Wayne Rooney. The Manchester United forward struggled on the left against Italy and despite setting up the goal for Daniel Sturridge looked off pace throughout. Positional changes aside it is unlikely that Hodgson will make too many changes to the team especially after the encourage display against Italy. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is back training but he is more likely to be ready for the Costa Rica game.
Uruguay meanwhile will have Luis Suarez back after a knee injury. The Liverpool man missed his country’s opening night defeat to Costa Rica but has been declared fit to take his place in the side. His return will be welcome boost for the South Americans especially with captain Diego Lugano ruled out with a knee injury.
While there has been a lot of talk about the performances, or lack of from Rooney in recent weeks, the Manchester United man is no longer seem as England’s main striker. That mantle has fallen to the young shoulders of Daniel Sturridge. The Liverpool man came into the world cup on the back of a 20 goal league season with the Reds and he showed his finishing once more against the Italians. His goal was a lovely side footed effort from a ball at pace. The sight of the striker limping off towards the end of the clash will have sent a shiver down the spine of England fans however the 24 year old will be fit and raring to go.
With Sturridge in one corner it is inevitable that in the other corner there is another heavyweight. Luis Suarez, team-mate of Sturridge, is the man leaning against the ropes. The 27 year old outshone his club-mate during the season breaking the 30 goal mark and his presence in the Uruguay team will raise the tempo of the game to another level. Despite not being quite 100% the striker still poses a threat and his ability to make something out of nothing will ensure that Gary Cahill and Phil Jagielka will know they are in a game.
Both can be volatile although the more senior of the two has developed a reputation for going beyond volatile with his will to win resulting in many controversies. The stage is set for the villain turn hero to return to villain mode.
England have never beaten Uruguay in a world cup game. The teams first met in the quarter-finals, almost 50 years ago, when Uruguay prevailed 4-2 and they met again in the opening match of 1966 when they drew 0-0. In all they have met 10 times with Uruguay winning four to England’s three. They last met in 2006 when goals from Peter Crouch and Joe Cole sealed a 2-1 win at Anfield.
Based on the first round performances you would fancy England to get something from this game. While a draw could be a decent result dependant on the score-line from the Italy and Costa Rica game, England will hope to pick up three picks and if Hodgson keeps faith with his young players then they could raise the expectations of an expectant public.
England to win 3-1.