Sebastian Fernandez Plays Down Uruguay’s Chances

Uruguay striker Sebastian Fernandez played down his team’s chances in the upcoming World Cup in an interview for Ole, warning that it will be a challenge for the Celestes to

progress from their tough opening group.

The South Americans must face 1998 champions France and a well-fancied Mexico team, not to mention the wave of support that will inevitably follow host nation South Africa. The Castrol World Cup Group Predictor sees them finishing second behind France, but Fernandez predicts that every game will be hard-fought.

“It’s complicated, but we have faith in our team,” admitted the forward, who hopes to challenge Diego Forlan and Sebastian Abreu for a place in the first team.

“Our rivals are Mexico and South Africa, with France as clear favourites. As a Uruguayan we were World champions twice, but we are a long way from the top places now.”

Fernandez, who plays his club football for 2009 Apertura champions Banfield and is the only Argentina-based player in the squad, also refused to speculate on the prospect of a potentially mouth-watering clash in the second round between his team and the Albiceleste.

“We have to stay calm and focus, and put this out of our minds for now. We know well from 2002 (when they fell at the first stage) how complicated it is to qualify. It would be fantastic to qualify, whoever the opponent may be.”