De Futebol

Argentina is hurting big time in their pursuit to make it to the 2018 World Cup. The guys tied nil-nil with Uruguay. Not good garoto.

The Daily Mail: ”Luis Suarez was substituted through injury but he could count himself lucky not to have been sent off as Uruguay held Argentina to a goalless draw in World Cup qualifying.

The Barcelona forward hobbled off with less than 10 minutes remaining of the clash in Montevideo, after sustaining a knock while lunging in on Manchester City defender Nicolas Otamendi.

Suarez went in studs-up on the central defender, catching him just above the ankle and risking serious injury before taking a kick in his calf.

He was not punished by referee Victor Carillo however. Fortunately, Otamendi appeared unharmed.

The heavy challenge was one of a number of bruising tackles in a seriously physical encounter in CONMEBOL qualifying.

The result did not do Argentina any favours.

With Chile losing at home to Paraguay, Jorge Sampaoli’s side could have leapfrogged Alexis Sanchez and Co with a win in Montevideo.

But at the end of the match they could only manage stalemate, taking them level with Chile on points but behind their rivals on goal difference.

In a show of unity prior to kick-off, and as part of a publicity stunt for the joint Argentina-Uruguay bid for the 2030 World Cup, Suarez and Lionel Messi stood side-by-side in shirts spelling out the year the countries hope to host the global showpiece.

But that was as far as the pleasantries went between these two fierce rivals.

A physical encounter was deadlocked at the break, with Suarez and Messi each spurning one chance a piece, and the crunching tackles continued after half-time.

Alvaro Gonzalez and Christian Rodriguez of Uruguay and the Argentinian pair of Gabriel Mercado and Javier Pastore were all cautioned by referee Carillo before Suarez’s reckless challenge, which went unpunished.

In the end, those confrontations were more memorable than any sight of goal for either side. “

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