In the 20-20 of hindsight, it would have stood better had Oscar Washington Tabarez walked down as coach of Uruguay after the last FIFA World Cup. Instead, he soldiered on, and at the age of 74 his epic, near-16-year control has come to an end at a period, not of his selecting, shown the door later four successive defeats, three of them heavy, in the Football World Cup 2022 qualifiers.
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Had he been absent three years ago then barely a bad word could have been said beside him. He ongoing his second spell in the custody of the national squad in 2006, taking control of a lateral that had missed out on three of the previous four Football World Cups and was unsuccessful to make it out of the collection phase in the other. Uruguay’s glory days, it was decided, were well and truthfully in the past.
How could it be then with a population little additional than 3 million? The first kings of the global game were fated to the eternal status of also-rans. And yet, in the three following FIFA World Cups, Uruguay has continuously qualified, always made the second round and in two of them were statistically the greatest side from South America. Last time out they removed Portugal, the governing European champions, in the quarterfinals.
Even so, Tabarez was port with what-ifs. In 2010, for example, what if Luis Suarez had not remained sent off in the quarterfinal beside Ghana? True, he was shamefaced of the most obvious handball, but the free-kick to Ghana that initiated the event was an absurd award in the failing seconds. Then in 2014, what if Suarez had not chosen up an interruption for his bizarre choice to bite Giorgio Chiellini? For more to know about FIFA World Cup Packages Click here
After opening-day overthrow to Costa Rica, Uruguay had saved themselves with a win over England and Italy their first FIFA World Cup victories over European opposition since 1970 only to lose all impetus when they lost their star striker. And what if Edison Cavani had not hurt a wound in 2018 and wasted the quarterfinal against France? With such a small population, Uruguay is inevitably needy on a small group of star players, and it prices them to be without one of the most significant on a large day.
Tabarez has completed his bit to enlarge the talent pool. Probably the most imposing part of his long reign has been the care paid to the youth ranks, identifying youngsters with the speed of thought, effort, and method to thrive in the global game, building an association with the national squad, and using the under-20 side as a conveyor belt to the senior side.
And this is what seduced Tabarez into remaining on after Russia 2018. He is coherent that in Qatar he would still be able to total on Suarez and Cavani, plus certain of his old dependables. And his gifted youngsters particularly the likes of Federico Val Verde and Rodrigo Bentancur would have inwards at full maturity.
So why has it not worked? In part, this has to do with the fitting list. The last four games lost by a shared score of 11-1 have been away to Argentina, away to Brazil, at home to Argentina (an unsuccessful defeat), and the feared trip to extreme height to take on Bolivia.
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