"We've improved in possession thanks to the younger players but we haven't lost that commitment, that fight, the sacrifice and solidarity, the determination to overcome adversity".
Despite being one of just five teams to have won the World Cup a couple of times and boasting two of the finest strikers in European soccer in its attack, Uruguay flew under most people's radar heading into the World Cup.
Messi left wondering on the world stage again. Oscar Tabarez had called on his players to be calm and collected and, leaving aside his irrepressible strike force, that is what made the difference in midfield and defence. "That means he has a very strong relationship with his players".
Asked whether Saturday's contest with Uruguay could be "boring", Portugal boss Fernando Santos told a press conference: "No, I don't think so".
Portugal will not change the way they play, which is quite one-dimensional and not particularly inspiring.
The fearless Uruguay go marching on: The South Americans remain "dark-horses" for World Cup glory, but with four wins out of four, conceding just one goal in the process, they simply can not be overlooked.
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Suarez is still a threat on his own, but the understanding up front between he and Cavani makes a world of difference to Uruguay in the final third.
Ronaldo was lifted. Portugal grew.
Cristiano Ronaldo gave no hint that he is about to retire from worldwide football despite seeing his Portugal side knocked out of the World Cup by Uruguay.
The first FIFA World Cup meeting between Uruguay and Portugal is bound to be a doozy.
This is the first time Uruguay have won their opening four games to a World Cup tournament since 1930, with the fourth game in that run being their 4-2 victory over Argentina in the final.
It is an accusation often levelled at Portugal that they are a toothless team if Cristiano Ronaldo has an off-day, but their victory in the Euro 2016 final with their talisman missing most of the game through injury is used as the ideal riposte to that suggestion.
The Uruguayan defense allowed its first goal of the World Cup, but Edinson Cavani scored twice to power Uruguay to the quarterfinals.
Goalkeeper Fernando Muslera did nearly gift them another equaliser, dropping a high ball at the feet of Bernardo Silva, but the Manchester City man could only volley over. Portugal, ironically after their talisman limped off early due to injury in the final against France, achieved their dreams by winning Euro 2016, so this small European nation has already savoured a success it perhaps never truly imagined.
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