Thursday, November 6, 2014

Uruguay All-Time 23 membr team

This is my all-time team for Uruguay. If there were an All-Time World Cup, this would be the 23 players I would bring to the tournament.  

Please also see my All-Time World Cup Team Index.

WC 1930
Uruguay is a tiny country with a population of 3 million, but they are one of the best football nations in the world.  They dominated international football in the 1930's, winning the 1924 and 1928 Olympic Gold medals.  Because of their successes, FIFA decided to awardUruguay as the first ever World Cup host in which they went on to win it.  In 1950, Uruguay inspired by Obdulio Varela pulled a big upset in Brazil, a game that broke the hearts of the Brazilians.  La Celeste also produced great team in 1970 and 2010.  

If there were an All-Time World Cup, this would be the 23 players I would bring to the tournament.  The team is not an All-Star team. I try to be as realistic as possible.

GK: Ladislao Mazurkiewicz
He is considered one of the greatest keepers from South America.  He led Uruguay to the semifinal of the World Cup in 1970.  He was voted the best keeper at the tournament. He played with Peñarol at home before moving to Brazil, Spain, Chile and Colombia.

GK Roque Maspoli
He was Uruguay's keeper at the World Cup in 1950, where they won it by breaking the hearts of the Brazilians.

GK: Andrés Mazali 
He won two Olympic Gold Medals in 1924 and 1928, but he was banned playing in the 1930 World Cup Finals after breaking the team's curfew.  

RB/DM;  Jose Leandro Andrade
His nickname was "the Black Marvel' (maravilla negra).  He was a wing-half at the WC 1930.  He was regarded as the best player at that World Cup and perhaps, in the world at the time. 

Jose Leandro Andrade

RB/CB: Jose Nasazzi
He was the captain of Uruguay's legendary team that won the World Cup in 1930.   He is regarded by many as Uruguay's greatest ever football player. He was known as "El Gran Mariscal" (The Great Marshal) and had already won the gold medal at the 1924 and 1928 Olympic Games, as well as the South American Championship in 1923, 1924 and 1926, by the time of the first World Cup.

CB: Jose Santamaria
Jose Santamaria was a member of Real Madrid's all-conquering team of the late 1950's.  He spent his 18-year career with Nacional and Real Madrid, winning 17 major titles the two teams combined, including four European Cups with the latter.  He was considered one of the best ever center-backs.

Jose Santamaria
CB:  Darío Pereyra
One of the best center-backs ever to play in the Brazilian league.  He was best remembered for his career with Sao Paulo between 1977 and 1988.  He was also at one point the second most expensive player in the league.

CB: Diego Godin 
He reached the WC semifinal in 2010 and won a Copa America in  2011.  He was a key player for Atletico Madrid when they upset Real Madrid and Barcelona for the La Liga title in 2013-2014.
Diego Godin

CB: Paolo Montero
He was a member of Juventus in the mid-1990's, spending 9 seasons there.  He won 4 scudetti's, but failed to win a Champions League despite playing in 3 Finals.  With La Celeste, he went to Korea/Japan 2002.

Paolo Montero

LB/LM: Victor Rodriguez Andrade
Jose Leandro Andrade's nephew.  He won the 1950 WC in Brazil . He was Uruguay's greatest left midfielder(or leftback). He played mainly with Peñarol at home.

LB:  Ricardo Pavoni
Affectionately known as "el Chivo", he was considered one of Uruguay's top left backs.  He was a part of the great Independiente of the 1970's that won 5 Copa Libertadores.  In Uruguay, he played Defensor. He was capped 13 times and  was a member of the 1974 WC team in West Germany.

DM: Obdulio Varela
Known as the "Black Chief".  He was the captain of the 1950 World Cup team.  His leadership was credited with helping Uruguay to come from behind to beat Brazil. He is considered one of the best players ever from Uruguay.  He played mainly with Peñarol and Montevideo Wanderers.

DM: Michele Andreolo
He was best remembered for his time in Italy.  He won 4 scudettos with Bologna. He was capped by Uruguay, but won the World Cup with Italy in 1938.

RW: Alcides Ghiggia
He scored the winning goal against Brazil in the 1950 World Cup Finals that sealed the WC for Uruguay.  The match was known as
the "Maracanazo".   He played for the national sides of both Uruguay and Italy during his career. He also played for the club sides of the Peñarol and Danubio in Uruguay and A.S. Roma and A.C. Milan in Italy.


RM:  Luis Cubilla
He was a part of Penarol that won two Copa Libertadores in the 1960 and 1961, and he won one more with Nacional in 1971.  He played in three WC Finals: 1966, 1970 and 1974.

LW/SS:  Pedro Rocha
Pedro Rocha won 8 Uruguayan league titles and 3 Copa Libertadores with Penarol from 1959 to 1970.  He moved to São Paulo in 1970.  He spent 7 successful seasons with the club.  He was the league's top scorer in 1972.

AM:  Enzo Francescoli
Known as "the Prince", he was Uruguay's most capped outfield player.  He was a big fan favorite in River Plate where he won Copa Libertadores in 1996.  He also played in France and Italy. With Uruguay, he won three Copa America's in 1983, 1987 and 1995, where he was voted the best player in two of the tournaments.  He was also South America Player of the Year in 1984 and 1995. 
Enzo Francescoli

SS:  Juan Schiaffino
He was a key player in Uruguay's WC winning team in 1950.  He later played in Italy with Milan and Roma.  He was considered one of the greatest Uruguayan players in history.

SS:  Walter Gomez
He joined River Plate at the end of La Maquina.  Later, he formed a famous partnership with Omar Sivori there.  So he was a connection between the two generations of Argentine club football.  His national team appearance was very limited because he moved to Argentina.
FW:  Hector Scarone
Scarone was known to be Uruguay's greatest players during the 1930's. He was a Double Olympic Gold medalist and won the 1930 World Cup Finals.  He scored 31 goals for Uruguay.  He was Uruguay's all-time leading scorer until 2011. 

ST:  Diego Forlan
His career in Europe started slowly.  He played poorly for Manchester United, but his career took off after heading to Spain in 2004.  He was two-time European Golden Shoe winner in 2004-2005 and then, 2008-2009.  He won the Golden Ball at South Africa 2010, where Uruguay finished 4th.  His best years were with Villarreal and Atletico Madrid.

Diego Forlan
ST:  Luis Suarez
At the time of writing, he is the third most expensive player in the world.  He won both the 2013-2014 FWA and the PFA Player of the Year while playing for Liverpool in England.  He was also the European Golden Shoe winner that year. Unfortunately, he was known for biting an opponent at a few occasions.

ST:  Pedro Petrone
Petrone played for Nacionel at home and Fiorentina in Italy.  He was a double Olympic Gold medalist in 1924 and 1928, where he was the top scorer in 1924.  He also won the WC in 1930.

Honorable Mention
Rodolfo Rodríguez, Diego Lugano, Alvaro Recoba, Ruben Sosa, Ángel Romano and Edinson Cavani.

Squad Explanation
I carried most of the bigger names, but I also included three newer players, Diego Godin and Luis Suarez.  Ghiggia scored the most imporatnt goal in Uruguay's history.  So I rewarded him with a spot here.
WC 1950

Starting lineup
Formation 4-3-3
Victor Andrade and Jose Leandro Andrade were more of a box-to-box midfielder in the modern era.  So I used them in the midfield.

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