South Africa V Uruguay Preview: Wednesday, 16th June (Group A)

15th June 2010 | World Cup Betting category: World Cup Previews & Predictions
World Cup Previews & Predictions

 

South Africa V Uruguay

Kick-off: Wednesday, 16th June – 19:30 GMT
Stadium: Loftus Versfeld Stadium, Pretoria
Referee: Massimo Busacca
Group A

 

South Africa

South Africa began their 2010 World Cup on home soil with a point against Mexico, with that old chestnut about whether the glass is half-empty of half-full the prime example of how Bafana Bafana fans must be feeling right now. Their dreams of making the last-sixteen are far from over but they know full well that only  a win will do over their South American opponents on Wednesday if they are to maintain a World Cup tradition of hosts qualifying for the knock-outs.

There’s certainly been no criticism about the spirit inside the South Africa camp, but the players did look a tad over roared in the early exchanges of their contest with Mexico and did have to ride a Mexican wave as they avoided conceding early on. The atmosphere inside the stadium was breathtaking, a lesson to all future World Cup hosts who which to stamp their mark on a tournament which captures the hearts of millions from across the globe, and the players did eventually rise to the occasion when midfielder Tshabalala sprinted through on goal before slamming home a sublime tournament opener. Only his seventh goal for his country by his most memorable by a country distance, possibly even significant if Bafana Bafana can build on that point by going one further in their following Group A encounter.

The hosts aren’t the most attractive of teams when it comes to playing pretty football, with retaining possession certainly not one of their stronger traits, and while Mexico did cause them a lot of problems in defence, South Africa did well to repel the Mexican’s for the majority of the game. However, a distinct lack of concentration in the closing stages of the game cost South Africa two massive points and its lapses such as that which punters alarmed. It’s imperative that every player remains vigilant and concentrates for the full 90 minutes and beyond else disaster is just around the corner, much like it was for the hosts.

If South Africa are to push on and build upon their point with Mexico they’ll need to show far more forward endeavour and courage, especially as Uruguay will pose more of a threat in front of goal themselves and it’s difficult to see the South American’s not breaking through Bafana Bafana’s rearguard at some stage. South Africa will need to find a goal from somewhere and we aren’t entirely sure where it will come from. Their goal against Mexico came from a lightening quick breakaway, a solo effort from Tshabalala, but with Mphela leading the line like a forlorn figure, it was clear that Parreira needed to bolster his attacking options and will have no option but to do so against Uruguay. There’s little chance of South Africa winning this encounter to nil and the likelihood is Bafana Bafana will need to locate the goal on at least two separate occasions if they are to stand any chance of winning this contest.

 

Uruguay

The target before the finals was to reach the Round of 16 for Uruguay, who needed a 2-1 aggregate win over Costa Rica before purchasing their tickets to South Africa. The Uruguayans remain on course to meet their objective, after their honours even contest with France left them a point better off and supremely confident in the knowledge that their trickiest Group A encounter has now passed them by, with two winnable clashes with South Africa and Mexico imminent.

Uruguay’s obvious qualities are their two in form strikers, with Diego Forlan and Luis Suarez accumulating a combined total of 77 goals last season. However, it was their defence capabilities which were tested in their opener with France, as the South American rearguard needed to repel the flurry of French attacks and did so in a commendable manner. So much so that confidence within the team began to grew, although clearly not enough, as Diego Forlan spurned a golden opportunity at the other end which could of sent the many Uruguay supporters inside the stadium home even happier.

The good news is Uruguay didn’t lose their first game of the tournament and haven’t been left playing catch up with the rest of the group. The second piece of good news is that only their results against Mexico and South Africa stand between them and the Round of 16, two teams that on paper they are more than a match for. In South Africa’s case, Uruguay will feel they are marginally better, or a great deal in our opinion, and if they can continue to supply the lethal forward pairing of Forlan and Suarez throughout, we see no reason why the South American side won’t leave Pretoria in a celebratory mood.

In the first game with France, resolute defending was the order of the day and Uruguay did so to a high level. Against South Africa, Uruguay’s attacking capabilities will come into question more, as they’ll need to do far more attacking in this contest against a country which did encounter a few defensive difficulties in their opener with Mexico. The sneaky movement of Forlan combined with the predatory instincts of Suarez should be too much for their opponents, but we shall see if Uruguay’s lethal forward partnership comes to the fore.

 

Match Odds:

South Africa – 3.25 Coral
Draw – 3.25 totesport
Uruguay – 2.40 Bet365

 

Our Prediction: Uruguay to WIN – 2.40 Bet365

The superb support Bafana Bafana received on the day they played Mexico was one of the reason why South Africa clinched a point against a team which outplayed them throughout. Against Uruguay, a team far more clinical in front of goal, South Africa will encounter more problems and will have a great deal of difficult containing Diego Forlan and Luis Suarez.

Our vote goes the way of Uruguay, who against the French shown us all that they could defend with spirit and gusto. If they can substitute a little of their resolute defending that day for some impotence in front of goal then there should only be one winner. The way you have to look at this game is, where South Africa to get five opportunities in the game how many would they score? With Mphela up front by himself, the likelihood is they will all be half-chances, so one at best. Turn the scenario the other way and with Forlan and Suarez both proven goalscorers at this and club level, you would fancy Uruguay scoring at least two of those. It’s a no brainer in our opinion, we only hope Uruguay don’t bottle it on their day by not attacking the South Africa defence and throwing bodies forward.

Our Recommended Bet: Diego Forlan FGS – 6.50 bWin




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