Copa Central: Luis Suarez's bad night

Luis Suarezcan't escape controversy -- even when he doesn't play. Uruguay, a winner of a record 15 Copa America titles, exited the Copa Centenario when it was upset by Venezuela, 1-0.

Suarez, who missed the Celeste's opening loss to Mexico with a hamstring injury, was listed on the Uruguay roster sheet as injured and unavailable but that didn't stop him from warming up late in the game -- and slamming the Plexiglas separating the players from coaches on the Uruguay bench and throwing one of his shoes on the field when he was told to sit down.

Veteran Uruguay coach Oscar Tabarez said there was no issue with decision to not play Suarez.

“The player is not ready to play,” he said. “This is an issue about numbers and doctors. Even if the player is upset, I’m not going to play a player who is not 100 percent. If he got upset, that is something I was not aware of. He didn’t tell me anything.”

Venezuela went into the Copa Centenario with just five wins in 16 tournament and one appearance in the semifinals. La Vinotinto, which has one point in six games in World Cup 2018 qualifying, took the lead on a goal by Salomon Rondon in the 36th minute. Rondon scored on a rebound after Alejandro Guerra caught Fernando Muslera off his line from more than 30 yards, and Uruguay keeper tipped Guerra's lob off the crossbar.

-- It wasn't easy, but Mexico extended its record under head coach Juan Carlos Osorio to 9-0-0 with a 2-0 win over Jamaica in a rematch of the 2015 Gold Cup final.

Javier Hernandez scored the first goal on a header in the 18th minute to give him 45 career goals, one short of Jared Borgetti's Mexico record. But Jamaica was unlucky not to go into the half with at least one goal as the Reggae Boyz peppered El Tri keeper Guillermo Ochoa with shots, forcing him to a spectacular save on Michael Hector.

In the second half, Jamaica should have had a penalty for Yasser Corona's foul on Clayton Donaldson, but no call was made. Mexico finally put the game away on Oribe Peralta's goal in the 81st minute.

CROWD COUNT. The crowd of 83,263 at the Rose Bowl for Mexico-Jamaica is the largest so far at the Copa Centenario. The 14 games have averaged 39,665 fans.

Copa Centenario Crowds:
83,263 Mexico-Jamaica (Pasadena, Calif.)
Argentina-Chile (Santa Clara, Calif.)
USA-Colombia (Santa Clara, Calif.)
60,025 Mexico-Uruguay (Glendale, Ariz.)
53,158 Brazil-Ecuador (Pasadena, Calif.)
42,766 Colombia-Paraguay (Pasadena, Calif.)
39,642 USA-Costa Rica (Chicago)
28,241 Brazil-Haiti (Orlando)
25,560 Venezuela-Jamaica (Chicago)
23,002 Venezuela-Uruguay (Philadelphia)
20,190 Peru-Haiti (Seattle)
17,133 Costa Rica-Paraguay (Orlando)
13,466 Panama-Bolivia (Orlando)
11,937 Peru-Ecuador (Glendale, Ariz.)

3 comments about "Copa Central: Luis Suarez's bad night".
  1. beautiful game, June 10, 2016 at 12:52 p.m.

    Venezuela has shown tremendous progress since last year...perhaps it would behoove the USSF to explore the reasons for such a dramatic step forward. Some of their players are first rate footballers and the team cohesion is quite solid.

  2. Ric Fonseca replied, June 10, 2016 at 1:57 p.m.

    Maybe so, I w, but I doubt it if the "...USSF (sic) (needs) to explore the reasons for such a dramatic step forward..." Don't know where you got this logic, that in face value seems illogical, and instead of looking to Venezuela, how about just looking across the border into .... yipes, yes senorito, Mexico!

  3. beautiful game, June 10, 2016 at 2:20 p.m.

    Ric, a learning experience from any source is a plus.

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