Friday Jun 27, 2014. 12:51
Without Luis Suarez Uruguay will look to rebuild their name when they face South American rivals Colombia in the round of the Last 16 of the FIFA World Cup.
Kick-off on Saturday evening will be at 22h00 (CAT).
Oscar Tabarez’s side has been in the headlines since Tuesday evening and despite having qualified for the knockout stages it was for all the wrong reasons.
A physically taxing display against the Italians in Natal was the least of their worries as Suarez sunk his teeth into Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini’s shoulder.
The Liverpool hit-man may have walked away from the match unscathed with a caution, but FIFA have since confirmed that the three-time biting culprit will miss out the remainder of Uruguay’s World Cup.
Suarez received a four-month ban from all footballing activities, meaning not only will he not turn out against Colombia but he is barred from being in the stadium on the night as well as training with the squad.
“Such behaviour cannot be tolerated on any football pitch, and in particular not at a FIFA World Cup when the eyes of millions of people are on the stars on the field.
“The Disciplinary Committee took into account all the factors of the case and the degree of Mr Suárez’s guilt in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Code. The decision comes into force as soon it is communicated,” said Claudio Sulser, chairman of the FIFA Disciplinary Committee.
Meanwhile, Uruguay still have a team laden with talent and will be even hungrier heading into the game looking to restore some pride in their team.
It will be no easy task, however, as Colombia have been one of the most exciting teams to grace the newly built stadiums in Brazil.
Their fluid play and inevitable team spirit has seen them dazzle and the likes of James Rodriguez and Jackson Martinez come to the fore with some impressive goals.
Los Cafeteros’ progression into the Last 16 was a magical one at that. Having taken maximum points off all their opponents in Group C, they were afforded the chance to hand their second choice goalkeeper Faryd Mondragon a spot of game time.
The 43-year-old became the oldest ever player to feature in the World Cup finals and his raw emotion upon coming onto the field stilled the spectators’ heartbeats.
“It's an honour for me to be here,” the new record-holder enthused. “In claiming this record I'm a person who embodies Colombian football and Colombian football history.”
“It was unbelievable, I think everyone was waiting for this moment. Thanks to Jose Pekerman and the rest of the team, my friends, this dream was able to come true for me.”