England match is a World Cup `final`, says Tabarez

AFP| Last Updated: Jun 16, 2014, 22:49 PM IST

Uruguay will treat their match against England this week like a World Cup final and star striker Luis Suarez could play, coach Oscar Tabarez said Monday.

"It`s a final and we need to win," Tabarez said of Thursday`s Group D game in Sao Paulo that both sides need to win to maintain their hopes of reaching the last 16.

Uruguay lost their first game against Costa Rica 3-1 while England were defeated 2-1 by Italy.

"We did not play badly in the first game," Tabarez said. "But we were hurt by the Cost Rica goals. We could not impose our strategy on the game."

The coach said Uruguay`s players must not be swayed by pessimism after the shock defeat.

Tabarez said the team had already "learned to accept the defeat. From today we started to move forward."

The Uruguay boss said he had not yet chosen the team to confront England.

Liverpool striker Suarez had an operation to repair a damaged meniscus barely three weeks ago, but is said to be fit again.

Suarez at one staged warmed up on the touchline against Costa Rica, but Tabarez did not risk him.

"It is a possibility, I can say no more," Tabarez said, when asked if Suarez would play against England.

Last week, Tabarez announced his team the day before playing Costa Rica. He said that this time he will only release the 11 just before the game.

Tabarez will be forced to replace Maximiliano Pereira who was sent off at the end of the Costa Rica game.