Senegal vs. Uruguay: Full Preview and Team News for Olympics Football Showdown

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Senegal vs. Uruguay: Full Preview and Team News for Olympics Football Showdown
Ben Radford/Getty Images

The men's soccer at the Olympic games has got off to quite a start with Japan's 1-0 upset over Spain.

Another tasty fixture in line is Sunday's showdown at Wembley between Senegal and Copa America champions Uruguay. Team Great Britain will also play at the same venue following this encounter but we shall be focusing on the former event for the time being.

Senegal already played Great Britain yesterday and showed great resilience to stifle team GB and get a 1-1 draw.

This is the first time that Senegal is playing at the Olympics and they will be looking to make an impact at least. You could say that they have done so already by getting a point against the hosts.

Japan's heroics from yesterday will be an eye-opener as well as an inspiration for them to try to overcome Uruguay. 

Senegal knew very late that they would play in London and it showed yesterday. They played without fear at times, not carrying the baggage of expectation that team GB looked burdened with.

The players to watch out for include Anderlecht striker Cheikhou Kouyate who helped his club win the league last season.

Sadio Mane is an upcoming youngster who recently made his debut for the senior side. He marked his first appearance with a goal in a World Cup qualifier.

Another youth star who you may want to keep a tab on is Ibrahima Balde who plays for another Spanish side in Osasuna. Balde also used to play in Argentina some time back.

Squad: Ousmane Mane (GK), Papa Camara (GK), Kara Mbodj (DF), Saliou Ciss (DF), Papa Gueye (DF), Zargo Toure (DF), Pape Souare (DF), Abdoulaye Ba (DF), Ibrahima Seck (MF), Cheikhou Kouyate (MF), Mohamed Diame (MF), Idrissa Gueye (MF), Sadio Mane (MF), Stephane Badji (MF), Moussa Konate (FW), Ibrahima Balde (FW), Magaye Gueye (FW), Kalidou Yero (FW)

Uruguay have historically been a very successful national side at soccer.

Their presence in London this year is very similar to the story of their football at the international stage.

They had success a long time ago and now they are redefining themselves again as a major force in world football. Reaching the semis of the World Cup and winning the Copa America do well to justify that.

This is their first participation in the Olympics since they won two back-to-back gold medals in 1924 and 1928.

Uruguay showed yesterday that they can score goals.

Their senior team has been doing it and this was emulated by the team yesterday without the goals of Liverpool star Luis Suarez or Napoli forward Edinson Cavani. 

Uruguay have been doing well on the international front recently and there is no reason why they cannot pick a medal in London. 

The players who are expected to do well include Liverpool are centre-back Sebastian Coates. He performed exceedingly well last year at the Copa America.

Oscar Tabarez will be looking to develop him as the successor to senior captain Diego Lugano and what better way than to test him in the Olympics.

The goal from Gaston Ramirez yesterday was simply sublime—he is often criticized for not producing for Uruguay. His goal yesterday might have shunned that notion for the time being besides signalling an indication of perhaps the player coming of age on the international scene.

Uruguay are an in form side and it will be tough for Senegal to get anything from here. Senegal is without the two Dembas—Papiss Demba Cisse and Demba Ba. With their shortage of scoring options, the midfielders will have to step up. 

Prediction: I will stick my neck out and say 1-1

Squad: Martin Campana (GK), Leandro Gelpi (GK), Diego Polenta (DF), Sebastian Coates (DF), Ramon Arias (DF), Emiliano Albin (DF), German Rolin (DF), Matias Aguirregaray (DF), Maximiliano Calzada, Gaston Ramirez (MF), Jonathan Urretaviscaya (MF), Nicolas Lodeiro (MF), Diego Rodriguez (MF), Egidio Arevalo (MF), Luis Suarez (FW), Abel Hernandez (FW), Tabare Viudez (FW), Edinson Cavani (FW)

The match is scheduled for Sunday 5:00 p.m. ET / 17:00 GMT

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