Uruguay will be on alert to shut down France’s razor-sharp attacking talents in Friday’s keenly anticipated World Cup quarter-final.
Les Bleus put a relatively drab group stage behind them to prevail in a 4-3 thriller against Argentina in the last-16, with a second-half brace from the exceptional Kylian Mbappe putting paid to Lionel Messi’s Russia 2018 dream.
Mbappe is set to face a very different prospect against the Uruguay backline expertly marshalled by Diego Godin and Jose Gimenez, with Antoine Griezmann fully aware of the quality his Atletico Madrid teammates bring at centre-back.
‘France have very important players, especially their forwards, who are very fast,’ midfielder Lucas Torreira told the Uruguay Football Association’s official Facebook page.
‘We have to be smart and occupy the spaces very well to try to overshadow their game.’
Torreira has impressed so far at the World Cup and the 22-year-old midfielder gives plenty of the credit to veteran head coach Oscar Tabarez.
‘The maestro, beyond being a coach, is a teacher of life, he advises us a lot,’ the reported Arsenal target added.
‘It’s amazing how we feel that affection on his part. He is a person who transmits tranquillity and confidence.
‘Although I am new to the World Cup, I am gaining confidence with the games. Many players have the experience of living these kind of moments, which helps us to be calm.’