Striker Luis Suarez had a bad day at the office personally as Uruguay began their 2018 World Cup campaign on Friday.
The Barcelona frontman was tipped to have a big tournament, and that could still turn out to be the case, but he will have to seriously up his game after turning in a poor performance in the late 1-0 victory against Egypt in Yekaterinburg.
With Egypt missing the goal threat of Mo Salah, Uruguay were always likely to have the better chances to break the deadlock. Suarez, in particular, had a number of brilliant opportunities to get off the mark but was unable to find the target.
This effort especially, midway through the first half, really should have found the net but the former Liverpool forward dragged his effort wide.
Suarez drew a fine save from Egypt goalkeeper Mohamed El Shenawy early in the second half, but it just wasn’t to be his day.
Suarez’s strike partner, Edinson Cavani, saw a rasping shot saved by the keeper, and the PSG man came even closer when he saw a free-kick cannon back off the post, but it looked as though Uruguay were about to come up short.
The deadlock was finally broken in the dying minutes, as central defender Jose Gimenez rose highest to power home a header to give the South Americans all three points and give them a strong foundation for progression.
Despite the victory, however, Suarez’s bad day at the office did not go unnoticed:
This display by Suarez must be one of the worst individual performances by a top player at any World Cup.
— Eoin McDevitt (@EoinMcDevitt) June 15, 2018
Mo Salah has been better than Luis Suarez in this game.
— Gary Lineker (@GaryLineker) June 15, 2018
Jeez Suarez what is going on?
— Messi World (@MessiWorId) June 15, 2018
The irony of Suarez being this shocking, the day after Barca find out they’ve been led a merry dance by Griezmann all year. Bums must be twitching a tad in Catalonia.
— Hayles (@Hayles_101) June 15, 2018
Yo is Suarez broken?
— The Boi (@ChuBoi) June 15, 2018
Cavani is being let down by Suarez today
— Bateson87 (@bateson87) June 15, 2018
Suarez finishing like he forgot today’s game actually counts #WorldCup2018
— Paul Malignaggi (@PaulMalignaggi) June 15, 2018
Credit to Uruguay, they’ve showed great character and quality despite Luis Suarez’s red card in the first minute of the match. #EGYURU
— Deji Faremi (@deejayfaremi) June 15, 2018
Uruguay face Saudi Arabia in their next clash on Wednesday, wherein victory will effectively seal their place in the last 16. Oscar Tabarez’s men will be strong favourites to pick up another three points in that clash, but Suarez will have to perform to a much higher standard.