Canada get next-tier World Cup lesson in defeat to Uruguay


Uruguay raced out and scored twice inside the opening 33 minutes to defeat Canada in a World Cup preparation friendly Tuesday at Národny Futbalovy Stadión in Bratislava, Slovakia.

The loss comes on the heels of Canada's resounding 2-0 win over Qatar in their first friendly of the September window last Friday in Vienna, Austria.

Uruguay opened the scoring in the sixth minute on a stunning free kick by Nicolás de la Cruz inside the near post.

La Celeste doubled that advantage in the 33rd minute when Darwin Núñez headed in a Luis Suárez cross and threatened to extend their lead even more.

But after starting on the back foot, Canada grew into the game and had a quality chance to pull within a goal just past the hour mark. However, Uruguay goalkeeper Sergio Rochet parried away Jonathan David’s low shot for a corner.

Canada, drawn into Group F with Belgium, Morocco and Croatia, have one final tune-up before their first World Cup appearance since 1986. Les Rouges take on Japan from Dubai on November 17.


  • 6’ — URU — Nicolás de la Cruz
  • 33’ — URU — Darwin Núñez

Three Things

  • THE BIG PICTURE: This match served as a significant step up in competition for Canada, who hadn't played a team of Uruguay’s pedigree during the John Herdman era. After being against the ropes early, Canada grew into the match, which has to be considered a positive for the head coach considering the opponents that await in November and December.
  • MOMENT OF THE MATCH: Conceding inside the opening 10 minutes was surely frustrating for Les Rouges. What a strike it was from Nicolás de la Cruz, who perfectly placed his free kick over the four-man wall, with Milan Borjan only able to get a touch on the River Plate midfielder's shot.
  • MAN OF THE MATCH: Canada’s most experienced European-based players looked a bit more comfortable in the match and that includes Jonathan David, the 22-year-old Lille forward who had the best chance at a goal.

Next Up 

  • CAN: Thursday, November 17 vs. Japan | International friendly
  • URU: Thursday, November 24 vs. South Korea | World Cup, Group H