Suarez strike gives Uruguay friendly win over France

Suarez strike gives Uruguay friendly win over France
By Reuters

06/06/2013 at 04:59Updated 06/06/2013 at 16:39

Luis Suarez scored the only goal five minutes after coming off the bench to hand Uruguay a 1-0 win over France at Estadio Centenario.

Suarez, who came on for the second half in place of Diego Forlan, scored with a diagonal shot into the bottom corner in the 49th minute after evading defender Eliaquim Mangala to take a pass from Maxi Pereira.

The striker did not start with Uruguay using the match as a warm-up for a critical World Cup qualifier in Venezuela on Tuesday that Suarez will miss through suspension.

Uruguay had the better of the opening exchanges with striker Edinson Cavani dangerous in front of Steve Mandanda's goal.

France, whose tour also includes a match against 2014 World Cup hosts Brazil on Sunday, then took control of the ball and Uruguay goalkeeper Fernando Muslera was forced to make several saves.

Play was evenly balanced in the second half but Uruguay coach Oscar Tabarez will be concerned that his most effective forward is unavailable when he most needs him.

Uruguay need a victory in Venezuela to try and climb into one of the South American qualifying berths.

They are sixth in the nine-nation group with 13 points from 11 matches, two points below Chile and Venezuela.

The top four teams at the end of the qualifiers in October will go through to the Brazil finals. The fifth-placed team, at present Venezuela, will enter a playoff against an Asian qualifier in November for another berth.