No favourites at London Olympics: Uruguayan football coach

July 10th, 2012 - 6:18 pm ICT by IANS  

Montevideo (Uruguay), July 10 (IANS) Uruguayan football team coach Oscar Tabarez says there is a lot riding on its performance but there are no clear favourites to win the gold at the London Olympics later this month.

“We are aware of what this competition is and of what is expected from us,” said Tabarez, who led Uruguay to win Copa America 2011 and to achieve fourth position in the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, Xinhua reported.

Uruguay is in Group A together with Britain, Senegal and the United Arab Emirates. The South American team will debut against the United Arab Emirates July 26 in London, with a U-23 team supported by three players older than 23 years old.

“We are going to try to achieve things. It’s the same speech I use in every national team,” said Tabarez during a press conference in Uruguay Celeste complex, near Montevideo, capital city of Uruguay.

For Tabarez, the Olympic Games “are an activity where young players consolidate their stake in the senior national team”.

The Uruguayan coach said that some of the national teams who will play in London 2012 “have great potential” but they haven’t impressed him.

“I haven’t seen them play. It’s a great tournament but there aren’t any favourites,” he said.

In the 18-player list, the older players confirmed by Tabarez are forward Luis Suarez, star from English Premier League side Liverpool FC, striker Edinson Cavani from Italian Serie A team Napoli and midfielder Egidio Arevalo from Italian club Palermo.

After 84 years, Uruguay will play again in the Olympics. They won gold medals in 1924 and 1928, the only two won by Uruguay in the Olympic Games.

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