Fifa World Cup South Korea Player Meets Sport History of Uruguayan Men’s Football – A Big Lesson to Learn!

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History of Uruguayan Men’s Football – A Big Lesson to Learn!

Soccer & Human Development

Uruguay’s performance at the 2010 World Cup did not come as a surprise to many who have followed his success and dreams. Uruguay, a fierce competition, made a breakthrough in 1997 when they came close to winning the FIFA World Under-20 Cup in Kuala Lumpur, the capital of Malaysia, finishing ahead of Ghana and Ireland. Since then, the country’s side has not won the tournament, but it paved the way for the Uruguayan World Cup football team in South Africa in June 2010.

In sub-Saharan Africa, the eyes of the world turned to Uruguay. Why? The national team – made up of unknown players – became one of the top four teams in the world, displacing the favourites, Brazil – made up of world famous footballers. After defeating four groups: South Africa, Mexico, South Korea and Ghana, the country – which was the leader in the first half of the 20th century – has become the first Latin American country in 8 years to reach the men’s final. the last ones.

Uruguay’s success came despite several obstacles: a small country of about 4 million people, immigration of players, lack of sponsors and cultural rivals (Brazil and Argentina). In addition to these obstacles, the country has the lowest sports budget in the Western Hemisphere.

1) – human development: Due to the well-known social development – health care, nutrition, education and entertainment – Uruguay is considered one of the most developed democratic countries in the world – the envy of many Spanish-speaking countries in the region – since the middle of the century 1980. . By the mid-1990s, the UNDP’s Human Development Index ranked Uruguay – which lacks minerals such as oil, gas, silver and gold – at number 32 out of 173 dependent countries. In other words, one of the government’s first priorities is to improve the lives of Uruguayan children. In fact, these principles have helped the country to do well in the race and to make the country proud. As a result, the national football team under the age of 17 gained the right to compete at the World Junior Championships in 1991, which was repeated in 1999, 2005 and 2009.

2) – Determination and Conviction: If one word can describe the Uruguay team it is “determination”. Although they were made up of unknown players, the national side was not afraid of the famous teams in the world such as France (who failed to meet the predictions), Germany and the Netherlands. At the 2010 World Cup, Uruguay, one of the smallest countries in the Western Hemisphere, won the respect of fans and pundits for their determination and enthusiasm. From that time, they, the Uruguayan team, knew the history of the world as one of the greatest pioneers of football. Without a doubt, these players are a symbol of hope and courage.

Tyranny & Football

Following the independence coup of 1973, the then Head of State José María Bordaberry, a strong anti-Marxist, established a dictatorship, during which Uruguay was characterized by several crises. The world’s reputation has been damaged by human rights and anti-democratic activities. Under this era, sport was not one of the priorities of Uruguayan dictators, unlike other dictators in the region, including Jorge Rafael Videla of Argentina (1976-1981) and Juan Velasco Alvarado of Peru (1968-1975).

Year after year, the military changed many of the Olympic rules. Instead, football, which boosted the national identity in the first half of the 20th century, entered a period of decline. After Uruguay participated in the World Cup in West Germany in June 1974, where it reached 14th place, the nation, for example, lost the chance to win an Olympic medal when it refused to send soccer players to the 1976 Summer Olympics in Montreal (Canada). However, the most unsuccessful year was 1977 when Uruguay lost 1-0 to Bolivia and could not compete in the 1978 World Cup. Undoubtedly, Uruguay’s players, who defeated Brazil in Rio de Janeiro, suffered from bad behavior.

As of July 1979, surprisingly the national team did not compete at the Pan American Games in San Juan de Puerto Rico (where they were favorites). But it wasn’t for lack of talent. Before this multi-sport conference, the Uruguayan players took the 1979 South American Under-20 Championship. By the early 1980s, it chose not to participate in the Continental Olympic Games in Colombia. In addition, although they lifted the Golden Cup in Montevideo, the team also failed to participate in the 1982 World Cup as they could not win the South American Elimination.

Amid the financial crisis, corruption and human rights abuses, more than 200 footballers left the country. On the other hand, in 1984, the anti-Communist dictatorship fell after 11 years.

Once in Uruguay…

At the beginning of the 20th century, Uruguay – a little smaller than Missouri – wrote one of the most famous chapters in the history of Latin America when the country was praised by various countries for its support for democracy, human rights and human development. Because of this, Uruguay, which had the most money in the Western Hemisphere, was compared to Switzerland and other European countries. Similarly, the Spanish-speaking world boasted one of the most important Olympic projects in the Americas.

In fact, sports, along with education, were very important in the Uruguayan regime. It was during this period – which is considered the “Golden Age” in the history of Uruguay – that the national team was the leader of football on the Planet. Since then, football players, including Obdulio Varela – who led the national team to victory in the 1950 FIFA World Cup – José Nasazzi and Pedro Cea – who led the gold winning Uruguayan Olympic team in Paris 1924 and Amsterdam 1928- – were known in schools, universities and industry.

At its peak, the Uruguayan team – the great pride of Latin America – – won consecutive Olympic football gold medals in 1924 – at that time no other Latin American country had won the Olympian competition – and 1928, and the first victory – the World Cup for men in 1930. This victory, on the other hand, is considered one of the most famous football stories, which inspired Brazil to create the best teams in the world. However, the most impressive performance took place in 1950. In that year, the Uruguayan football team achieved glory when they defeated Brazil, the host country, and lifted the world championship, an event that was held at the Maracana Stadium in Rio de Janeiro. The victory of this country is the most important thing in the history of football.

These actions gave the South American country an international reputation disproportionate to its size and population. Indeed, the democratic system did a lot to win international conferences. Unfortunately, this success did not last when a military dictatorship was established in the early 70s.

Uruguay – The Land of Sports Lovers

Since the 1970s, governments have prioritized sports. Despite this, Uruguay -with a population of 4 million – had an amazing sports team, including Ana Maria Norbis (aquatics), Fiorella Bonicelli (tennis), Sergio Lafuente (weightlifter) and Ricardo Vera (track & field). Meanwhile, his basketball players have also been very successful. At the FIBA ​​Colombia World Cup in the early 80s, Uruguayan athlete Wilfredo Ruiz was the first to score goals. For example, two years later, in 1984, the national basketball team defeated Canada and won the right to participate in the Summer Olympics in Los Angeles (where it finished sixth). Uruguay previously became the only Latin American team to win two consecutive Olympic basketball bronze medals.

Apart from football and basketball, Uruguay has benefited from cyclists and rowers from around the world. In the 1980s, the country’s rower, Jesús Posse, came close to winning a gold medal at the world championships, an international competition dominated by Eastern Europe. At the 2000 Summer Games in Oceania, cyclist Milton Wybnants was the first to finish, after Spain’s Juan Llaneras.

Finally, the Uruguayan government should develop a program to place Uruguay — sometimes called the “Switzerland of the Americas” — among the top ten sporting nations of this century. Like South Korea, one of the world’s most successful Olympic nations since 1988, the Spanish-speaking republic must think big.

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