Uruguay vs Germany: Three reasons why Uruguay will win

In the Uruguay vs Germany match, Saturday's World Cup fight for third place, Uruguay has the edge in pride, defense, and Luis Suarez.

Fernando Vergara/AP Photo
Uruguay's soccer players Alvaro Pereira, left, Edison Cavani, second left, Edigio Arevalo Rios, center, and Andres Scotti, right, warm up during a training session in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, Friday. Uruguay will face Germany on July 10 during the soccer World Cup.

No matter how FIFA dresses it up, Saturday’s third-place World Cup play-off is football’s ultimate dead rubber match – the game no team or player ever wants to appear in.

But play Uruguay and Germany must, and here are the three reasons why Uruguay will win:

1. This game will mean more to to the small but proud nation of Uruguay. Memories of past World Cup glories (1930 and 1950) by Los Charrúas may only be dimly remembered by the wider world but Uruguayans are deeply proud of their status as two-time world champions. Recent decades have provided few opportunities to add to that incredible record for a nation of just over three million and while they fell short this year they know it might be some time again before they have a chance to prove themselves the third best soccer team in the world.

IN PICTURES: Paul the Octopus predicts World Cup outcomes

2. The Netherlands scored three goals against Uruguay in the semi-final but they were playing against a depleted defense, missing its injured talisman Diego “The Sheriff” Lugano and the cunning of suspended Porto fullback Jorge Fucile. Had the team been able to call on their wonderfully committed approach – the essence of Uruguay’s “garra” warrior spirit – as well as their mastery of the sly arts of denying strikers shooting opportunities, that game would have been a lot closer. They will be out to prove against Germany what might have been.

3. Uruguay was genuinely disgusted at the witch-hunt against Luis Suarez after his handball saved his team against Ghana. His cheating was no worse than much of the diving and faked injuries that have marred this World Cup and in contrast to the antics of players like Arjen Robben and Mark Van Bommel, Suarez’s instinctive footballing reaction was severely punished. Denied a chance to play in his country’s first semi-final in 40 years, he will be out to thumb a nose at his critics and in what is traditionally a high-scoring game, and make a late bid for the golden boot – the award for the player with the most World Cup goals.

Don't buy the argument? Read three reasons why Germany will beat Uruguay.

IN PICTURES: Paul the Octopus predicts World Cup outcomes

World Cup 101:

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