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Franco Acosta and Ramiro Guerra take Uruguay to the knockout stages

Villarreal men, Franco Acosta and Ramiro Guerra, made a difference for Uruguay as La Celeste advances to the knock out stages. Acosta scored Uruguay's only goal assisted by Guerra.

María José Segovia

The ball keeps rolling at the U-20 FIFA World Cup in New Zealand. Today, Villarreal players, Franco Acosta and Ramiro Guerra, played a vital role for Uruguay in helping the Charrúas advance to the knock out stages.

Both cantera players were giving a starting role for La Celeste. Acosta made his second start for Uruguay, whereas Uruguay coach, Fabian Coito gave Ramiro Guerra his first minutes in the tournament as a starter against Mali, replacing Mauro Arambarri. Acosta was subbed off in the 89th minute and Guerra played the entire match.

Acosta was a constant menace for the Malian defense with his pace and explosive acceleration. Uruguay grabbed the lead in the 17th minute after Ramiro Guerra headed the ball into the box and Acosta headed the ball into the face of the Malian GK. Mali would score the equalizer one minute before half time after Uruguay keeper Guruceaga, made an awful mistake grabbing the ball with his hands after a back pass from his defender. The ref gave an indirect free kick that was well struck by Adama Traore into the back of the net, The game ended in a 1-1 draw and both Uruguay and Mali advance to the next round.

You can watch the match highlights here:

Uruguay finished in second place after a draw. Their next match will be next Thursday where they'll be facing the Group E winner which could be either Brazil, Hungary or Nigeria.

Congratulations to Franco Acosta and Ramiro Guerra and may Uruguay advance further into the U-20 World Cup.