Fire's Fernandez back in the mix for Uruguay qualifiers

Fernández Fire

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BRIDGEVIEW, Ill.  Injuries and stiff competition have held Álvaro Fernández to just one appearance for the Uruguayan national team since he played in four games during Uruguay’s semifinal run at the 2010 World Cup.

But the Chicago Fire midfielder found out this weekend that he’s been named to the 30-man preliminary roster for Uruguay’s two World Cup qualifiers against Argentina on Oct. 12 and Bolivia on Oct. 16, and this time, he hopes he can make an impact.

“It’s not the final call-up yet, but it still feels good to be in the mix of players that could be called into Uruguay,” Fernández told MLSsoccer.com through a translator.  “Sometimes, [a call-up] is due to your performance, but sometimes it’s luck. Twice I was injured when I was called in.”

Fernández scored his first two goals for the Fire in back-to-back games against Toronto and Montreal in September, and he said he’s in contact with Uruguay coach Óscar Tabárez’s staff almost every week.

He’ll find out in the next few days whether he’s made the final roster.

“I think these last couple of weeks have helped, with scoring a couple of goals,” Fernández said.

The mid-October qualifiers come during a two-week MLS international break before the Fire play New England on Oct. 20.

“It should give him confidence that, not only players in Europe, but players in MLS are being considered and the league is recognized as a strong league,” coach Frank Klopas said. “It’s a confidence booster, it’s good for the league, it’s good for everyone.”