A late goal from Christian Stuani has seen Uruguay register their first win in four matches, prevailing 1-0 over Panama on Friday.
Stuani rose highest at the back post to nod Jonathan Rodriguez’s cross into the net in the 82nd minute, with the Middlesbrough striker previously having been one of the more profligate of the Uruguayans as they struggled to break down Panama at the Estadio Rommel Fernandez Gutierrez.
The friendly victory was Uruguay’s first since their opening match of the 2015 Copa America, with Oscar Tabarez’s men looking to rediscover their best form ahead of the start of CONMEBOL’s World Cup qualifying in October.
Without Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani, Uruguay lacked a cutting edge in Panama, with Stuani, Nicolas Lodeiro and Diego Rolan all failing to convert opportunities in the opening 20 minutes.
Stuani and Rolan started up front for Uruguay with Lodeiro in behind but the second-half introduction of Rodriguez for the latter seemed to spark Tabarez’s side.
Rodriguez teed up Stuani on the hour-mark but he could only shoot straight at Panama goalkeeper Jose Calderon, while Diego Godin sent a header over the bar from a free-kick with 15 minutes remaining.
In the 79th minute, Rodriguez had a shot blocked, while the Deportivo La Coruna forward rounded Calderon in the lead-up to Stuani’s goal before regathering possession and delivering a cross to the far post.
Panama had a late chance for an equaliser but Luis Tejada’s glancing header flashed wide of the post in stoppage time.