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Team GB 1 v 0 Uruguay
Millennium Stadium , Cardiff
Full time: Who needs Giggs? Or Beckham? Team GB qualify for the last eight and top their group to boot. South Korea await them in the quarter finals back in Cardiff on Saturday night. Uruguay were poor and follow Spain on the early plane home. It wasn't the best game to watch or the best performance from Team GB but a win is a win.
90mins+4: Ramirez hits the bar with a cracking shot that had Butland beaten but it still wouldn't have been enough to see them through. Sturridge goes off and on comes West Brom's Craig Dawson. Suarez takes a free kick but Butland saves with style and that's that.
90mins: Suarez gets the ball on the edge of the area but Richards forces him wide and it goes out for a goal kick. Sinclair is replaced by Jack Cork.
87mins: It's all getting scrappy now. A corner for Uruguay and there's handbags between Richards and Cavani and then Coates and Allen. As Pierre de Coubertin would say it's all about the taking part.
84mins: Sturridge breaks clear and runs half the length of the pitch before trying to bend a shot into the bottom far corner but Campana just tips it round the post. It's woken a few of the crowd up.
81mins: The Beeb's pair of Pearce and Lawrenson praise the ref (and you surely can't get higher praise) before Lawro spoils it by bizarrely comparing him to Inspector Clouseau.
78mins: Team GB substitution - Bellamy off, replaced by Danny Rose. Bellamy gives the captain's armband to Richards. He and Cavani then demonstrate the Olympic spirit after the Napoli player comes over and politely asks him to hurry up. Or something like that.
75mins: The second biggest cheer of the night greets a yellow card for Suarez. Cavani swings in a high cross for Coates who heads down to Suarez but the Liverpool player slips and, maybe thinking he's playing rugby, half catches the ball. He then claims he was fouled (he wasn't) and the tells the referee he didn't handle it (he did).
72mins: A substitution from Pearce wouldn't go a miss here. Fresh legs and fresh ideas might alleviate some of the pressure that's building. Suarez in particular is getting better.
69mins: Uruguay starting to dominate possession. Suarez is penalised for handling in the area. It looked like it bounced up and hit is hand but as it's Suarez I'll say it was deliberate anyway.
65mins: Taylor curls a shot just round the far post. Would have been spectacular from the Swansea youngster. You get the feeling a second for Team GB would finish it but an equalizer would make it a very nervous finish.
63mins: Richards falls asleep (figuratively) and Suarez is clean through and his shot brings an excellent diving save from Butland. Cavani knocks the rebound into the side netting. It's another warning.
62mins: Great pass from Taylor to Bellamy leads to a corner but it comes for nothing.
60mins: Despite the fact Team GB are a goal to the good, the crowd is very quiet (even the boos for Suarez have become muted) and that's down in a large part to the fact the game isn't actually that good.
59mins: Viudez goes off for Uruguay, replaced by Lodeiro.
54mins: Senegal have equalised against UAE. As things stand Team GB top the group, Senegal are second.
53mins: Suarez (booo!!!) muscles Caulker off the ball and is clean through but Butland smothers the ball at his feet and Taylor clears away the danger. Team GB need to be careful not to concede a soft goal, it would give Uruguay a sniff of victory which could energize them to get just that.
52mins: Bellamy and Ramsey combine well again and the Arsenal youngster tests Campana with a stinging shot but the keeper is equal to it.
50mins: Coates scythes down Cleverly and after allowing play to go on for about a minute the referee books the Uruguayan. That's officiating of a gold medal standard.
47mins: We're back and Team GB nearly take a 2-0 lead. Bellamy crosses for Sturridge who heads back across goal but Sinclair can only side-foot into the post with the goal at the mercy. Fortunately for him the whistle had gone for offside and we can sweep his shocking miss under the carpet.
Half time: A poor half from both teams but if either deserved a goal (and to be honest, neither did) it was Pearce's men. Still they have one foot in the last eight. I'm off for a cuppa, see you in 10.
45mins+1: GOAL FOR TEAM GB. Just what they needed going into the break. Sinclair plays in Allen down the right and he knocks it in for Sturridge who tucks it away gratefully. Uruguay appeal for offside but it's 1-0 Team GB.
42mins: "You know the referee has a whistle" says happy Lawro. Yup, the fact he's the referee is probably a big clue there. For what it's worth Nishimura's not had much to do but he's done it well. Rodriguez has been patched up and rejoins the fray.
40mins: A melee in Uruguay's box box results in a Team GB corner. Rodriguez gets a nasty knock in the face and has to go off for treatment but the corner come to nothing.
38mins: Ramirez fouls Bellamy and then is booked possibly for kicking the ball away not the initial foul. Uruguay are not playing at all well and their frustrations are showing.
34mins: Suarez forces a corner of Caulker. Coates climbs high and heads straight at Allen. Uruguay's players appeal en masse for a penalty but the referee Nishimura rightly waves them all away.
30mins: Suarez breaks into the box but Richards gets a boot on his shot and Butland collects. Richards looks to have injured his knee but he's back on his feet quickly.
28mins: Bellamy and Ramsey combine superbly on the right and the Arsenal man whips the ball across the face of goal but neither Sturridge or Sinclair can get a boot on it.
26mins: Uruaguay break but Ramirez wastes the opportunity with a shot from 30 yards out that doesn't trouble Butland at all.
24mins: Surprise news from Coventry - the UAE are one up against Senegal. Another two unanswered goals for them and this scoreline in Cardiff would send both GB and Uruguay through.
21 mins: Taylor is booked for a foul on Viudez. It's a definite yellow card, though Lawro is certain that there's "not much in it" and the Uruguayan has "made a meal of it". Foreigners, eh?
18mins: Team GB are keeping the ball well but they are rarely put under real pressure from Uruguay who haven't really turned up yet. Boos greet Suarez again and cheers greet the fact he's penalized for a foul on Cleverley.
16mins: Roy Hodgson is in the crowd with a big smile on his face. Only joking, he looks as miserable as always.
15mins: Ramsey forces a corner and takes it but Richards is beaten to the ball at the far post.
13mins: Bellamy is well up for this in front of his home-town crowd. He shoots into the arms of Campana but he's looking dangerous.
11mins: Aguirregaray creates a great chance for Viudez who looks certain to tap into the net but Taylor puts him under pressure and the Uruguayan side-foots it wide.
6mins: A cagey start from both sides, but Bellamy gets a good cross in from the right. It's just behind Sturridge though. The stand-in skipper is up for this and causing Uruguay a few problems.
2mins: And already the Cardiff crowd is giving a warm welcome to Suarez whose first two touches are loudly booed.
1 min: Uruguay get us underway. Craig Bellamy has the Team GB captain's armband in the absence of Giggs.
Well, Alan Hansen seems to be getting into the swing of this tournament and he's been quite positive in the build-up. However, I expect Mark Lawrenson to suck the joy out of the occasion, he's co-commentating on the Beeb with Jonathan Pearce. A rousing rendition of God Save the Queen.
The big news from Cardiff is that Pearce has left out Ryan Giggs and the decision appears to be injury-related as the Welshman left training early yesterday. Here are the teams then:
Team GB: Butland, Taylor, Bertrand, Caulker, Cleverley, Allen, Sturridge, Bellamy, Richards, Ramsey, Sinclair.
Subs: Steele, Rose, Dawson, Giggs, Tomkins, Cork, Sordell.
Uruguay: Campana, Arias, Coates, Rolin, Ramirez, Aguirregaray, Rodriguez, Viudez, Arevalo Rios, Suarez, Cavani.
Subs: Gelpi, Polenta, Albin, Calzada, Hernandez, Uretta, Lodiero.
Referee: Yuichi Nishimura (Japan)
The task is simple: avoid defeat and Team GB qualify for the quarter finals, however if they achieve that, who they will lose to on penalties in the last eight is a little more complicated as it also depends on Senegal’s score. If they top the group Stuart Pearce’s team are back in Cardiff on Saturday night for a match against South Korea, finish runners and they would face Mexico at Wembley on Saturday afternoon. But that's for the future, this Uruguay team are one of the strongest teams in the tournament.
In short, playing for a draw will be a dangerous tactic for Team GB not least because as we now know not playing to win, even if it enhances your medal chances long-term, is worthy of disqualification.
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