Strikers star in Sao Paulo
Cavani, Suarez score as Uruguay crush Colombia 3-0 in World Cup qualifier
Uruguay thrashed Colombia 3-0 in a South American World Cup qualifier marked by goals from its strikers Edinson Cavani and Luis Suarez. Darwin Nunez added the third in Barranquilla on Friday. Uruguay, fourth in the standings after three matches, will on Tuesday face Brazil. Brazil was playing Venezuela late Friday for the lead in the 10-team pack.
Colombia remained in sixth place. It next plays Ecuador in Quito. Uruguay was without key players including goalkeeper Martin Silva, defender Sebastian Coates, midfielder Federico Valverde, and striker Maxi Gomez. But a mistake by Colombia defender Yerry Mina in the fifth minute gave Uruguay the lead. Mina lost the ball near his penalty box, Nahitan Nandez pounced, and Cavani hit gently from close range, giving no chance to goalkeeper David Ospina.
Colombia missed a chance when Duvan Zapata's header hit the right post. Uruguay came back through a counterattack. Rodrigo Betancur stopped a Colombia push and fed Suarez. The striker passed it back to Betancur inside the penalty box and the midfielder was brought down by Jeison Murillo. Suarez, the top goal scorer in South American qualifiers, netted his 25th from the spot in the 54th minute.
Nunez made it 3-0 in the 73rd, and Colombia got into deeper trouble in the last minute when defender Mina was sent off after receiving a second yellow card.
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