The first 59 minutes of this match were some of the dullest of the tournament. Then Italy's Claudio Marchisio was given a red card and the game opened up with Uruguay and Italy both producing promising shots at goal.
Then controversy erupted: It appears as though Luis Suarez attempted to take a bite out of Italian defender Giorgio Chiellini in the 79th minute, causing hysteria among the Azzurri. They did not recover in time to stop Diego Godin’s 81st-minute winner off yet another set piece.
Uruguay finishes second in the group and will meet the winner of Group C in the Round of 16. Italy will be going home after the group stage for the second straight World Cup after winning it all in 2006.
GODIN AGAIN: There is one man who scored a goal to win his league title, a goal in the Champions League Final, and a goal to get his team to the Round of 16. And it wasn't a forward. His name is Diego Godin and he plays centerback. His goal off a Gaston Ramirez corner sent Uruguay through just when it looked like the team was out of good ideas.
SUAREZ INCIDENT LOOMS LARGE: There was a biting incident in the Dutch League and then, most famously, he took a bite out of Branislav Ivanovic when playing in the English Premier League. He was suspended 10 games by the FA but it looks like he was back at it on Tuesday. In the 79th minute Suarez tried to take a bite out of Chiellini but it was not seen by the referees. But the cameras picked up on it, which means Suarez could be facing a ban.
Welp, here's the proof. pic.twitter.com/hIw6Sw8RaU— Kevin Draper (@kevinmdraper) June 24, 2014
MARCHISIO SENT OFF: Although Mario Balotelli seemed like a candidate for a red card in this game (he was taken off at halftime with a yellow), it was another Italian who was given his marching orders. The typically cool-headed Claudio Marchisio took a heavy touch in the 59th minute and a second later his cleat ended up in Egidio Arevalo Rios’ shin, resulting in a red.
CHANGING IT UP: After playing the first two games of the World Cup in a 4-1-4-1, Cesare Prandelli decided to change up his formation against Uruguay. He moved the team to a 5-3-2, a formation that has been used by Juventus over the past few seasons to great results. Not to be outdone, Oscar Tabarez also changed his system to a five-man backline after playing in a 4-4-2 through the first two games. With the 5-3-2 formation doing so well at the World Cup, it is no surprise that two more teams switched to it.
QUIET FIRST STANZA: The first half was quiet as both teams played cautious. The Azzurri controlled 61 percent of the possession but managed just one shot on target. The best chance in the half came in the 33rd minute when Gianluigi Buffon was forced to make a double save against Luis Suarez and Nicolas Lodeiro.
If you hate soccer, the first half of Italy-Uruguay was your Mona Lisa.— Robert H (@bandwagonknick) June 24, 2014
NOT SO SUPER: Balotelli came into the match hoping to add to his World Cup goal tally. But after just 45 minutes that dream was over. He received a yellow card in the 22nd minute, a caution card that would have kept him out of the second round anyway. He was then subbed off at halftime with the common belief being that Cesare Prandelli was afraid he would get a second yellow and be sent off.