Diego Forlan praised Uruguay’s ruthlessness in front of goal following their Group B victory over Nigeria in the FIFA Confederations Cup.
It was a special evening for the 34-year-old Internacional striker on Thursday as he became the first player from Uruguay to reach 100 caps and marked the occasion with a thunderous strike to earn a 2-1 win that puts the South American side in a good position to reach the semi-finals.
Nigeria, who were on an 18-match unbeaten run, pushed hard to find a winner after John Obi Mikel had cancelled out Diego Lugano’s opener, only to be undone on the counter attack after 51 minutes when Forlan found himself in acres of space on the edge of the penalty area before unleashing a powerful shot past goalkeeper Vincent Enyeama.
The result leaves Nigeria and Uruguay level on three points as they prepare to face leaders Spain and Tahiti respectively in the final group game. Spain’s place in the last four is virtually assured after a 10-0 win over Tahiti boosted their goal difference, giving Uruguay’s victory on Thursday extra significance.
Forlan hailed his side’s display, as he said: “It is important to control the match from the beginning, then it was very difficult for us but we took advantage of the opportunities we had in the match.
“In the second half we both had a couple of chances to score, but in the end I made the goal and the match was won, we got the three points and now have a great opportunity to move into the semi-finals.
“That’s what always shows (about) Uruguay, we know that sometimes we do not have control of the match but when you have the opportunity, we have to take advantage.”
On his milestone appearance for Uruguay, Forlan added: “To play a hundred games with the Uruguayan team is an honour. I’m happy to score the goal, it was a good pass and a nice goal.”