Uruguay coach Diego Alonso on Monday dismissed the importance of the South American side’s controversial 2010 World Cup quarter-final victory over Ghana ahead of their crunch clash in Qatar.
In South Africa 12 years ago, Uruguay reached the semi-finals after ousting Ghana on penalties.
Uruguay forward Luis Suarez deliberately handled the ball on the goalline deep into extra time to prevent a certain goal, with Asamoah Gyan then missing the subsequent spot-kick.
Despite Suarez’s dismissal, Uruguay made the Africans pay in the shootout. Both are sides are bidding to join Portugal in the last 16 from Group H, with South Korea also still in the hunt.
“It’s a different story, for both of us,” said Alonso following Uruguay’s 2-0 defeat to Portugal on Monday. “We will both go looking for qualifications. Friday will be decisive but it’s a very different story to what happened 12 years ago.”
Ghana are in pole position to reach the last 16 having beaten South Korea 3-2 earlier on Monday.
But they still need to win to guarantee their knockout place while both Uruguay and South Korea, who play Portugal, have to win to have any chance of staying in the World Cup.
In order to progress, Alonso acknowledged his team would have to play better than they have done so far, in a 0-0 draw with South Korea and the Portugal defeat.
“The team has to loosen up and motivate itself more to play as we did in the second half today,” said Alonso. “We need to take risks, to be the brave team of the qualifiers and the second half today.”
Speaking earlier, after his team’s win against South Korea, Ghana coach Otto Addo played down the significance of the rematch. “I’m a strong believer that if you don’t seek too much for revenge for this kind of thing, sometimes you get even more blessings,” he said.