Despite that hiding, Tahiti coach Eddy Etaeta says it has been worth making the trip. “We have been pleasantly surprised with our experiences in Brazil as, despite our losses, the people have been right behind us.

We have won their hearts,” said Etaeta, whose team suffered a record loss in FIFA tournament history against the rampant Spanish world champions.

Their first outing had brought a 6-1 loss to Nigeria and now the Uruguayans, having beaten the African side, will look for an easy win as they attempt to deny Nigeria second spot in Group B and with it a place in the semi-finals.

One of the lasting images was of goalkeeper Mikael Roche kissing the Maracana stadium turf after the Spain game where 71,000 fans gave Tahiti a generous and moving ovation.