Skip to main content Text Only version of this page
BBC
Home
TV
Radio
Talk
Where I Live
A-Z Index
BBC Sport World Cup 2002

 You are in: Team Pages: Uruguay  
Front Page
Statistics
Team Pages
Features
Other News
Sports Talk
TV/Radio Coverage
Photo Galleries
Venues Guide
Matches Wallchart
World Cup Greats
History
Quiz

BBC Sport

BBC News

BBC Weather


Click on a name for more detailed team information:

Argentina
Belgium
Brazil
Cameroon
China
Costa Rica
Croatia
Denmark
Ecuador
England
France
Germany
Italy
Japan
Mexico
Nigeria
Paraguay
Poland
Portugal
Rep of Ireland
Russia
Saudi Arabia
Senegal
Slovenia
South Africa
South Korea
Spain
Sweden
Tunisia
Turkey
USA
Uruguay

Monday, 8 April, 2002, 10:24 GMT 11:24 UK
Pua in for the long haul
Uruguay manager Victor Pua
Uruguay reached the 1997 World Youth Cup final under Pua
BBC Sport Online's Tim Vickery

separator
space

When Uruguay beat Australia to secure the final World Cup place, it should have been a moment when the keys of Montevideo were handed over to coach Victor Pua.

Getting Uruguay to the World Cup for the first time since 1990 was the fulfillment of a long-term project which Pua had seen through from start to finish.

As coach of Uruguay's Under-20s, he groomed a side good enough to reach the final of the 1997 World Youth Cup.

Two years later he took the next crop to the semi-finals - and Uruguay's senior side is now full of players from the two campaigns.

Open Quote
I have good memories of Daniel (Passarella)... But Victor (Pua) was there all the way to the end, so I expect he'll get all the credit
Close Quote
Uruguay playmaker Alvaro Recoba

Pua gave them their baptism at full level when he surprisingly took his youngsters all the way to the final of the 1999 Copa America.

He then stepped down to the post of assistant to Daniel Passarella, the former Argentina coach and captain who was controversially appointed.

Halfway through the qualifying campaign Passarella resigned, and Pua steered the ship safely home.

But in the days following Uruguay's triumph, Montevideo became a rumour factory.

Pua's contract had come to an end, and the press suggested that it would not be renewed.

The newspapers were full of hints that Pua had lost the dressing room.

Open Quote
We talked. We cleared up some misunderstandings, and now everything's fine
Close Quote
Dario Silva on his falling-out with Pua
Although the Uruguayan public reviled Passarella as a deserter, some of the senior players made little secret of their preference for the Argentine.

Seldom one to pull a punch, playmaker Alvaro Recoba put the feeling into words.

"I have good memories of Daniel," he said. "He gave us a big hand at an important stage of the qualifiers.

"But Victor was there all the way to the end, so I expect he'll get all the credit."

Worse was to follow. Tales began to leak out of indiscipline in the Uruguayan camp; of drinking on late night fishing trips, and involvement with call girls.

Pua kept silent when the players wanted him to rush to their defence.

The journalist who made the accusations was thought to be close to Pua - some even saw Pua as the source for the stories.

Dario Silva, top scorer in qualifying, went as far as to say that he could never forgive the coach for his silence.

Uruguay striker Dario Silva
Silva has not always seen eye to eye with his coach

Pua weathered the storm, and decided to stay on. But he was aware that he had plenty of fences to mend on the way to the World Cup.

In March he travelled to Europe, and made a point of visiting his senior players.

Settling old differences was almost certainly high on the agenda.

On his return home he was asked about his meeting with Dario Silva. "We talked," he said. "We cleared up some misunderstandings, and now everything's fine."

With his off the field problems sorted out, Pua can now concentrate his efforts on preparing the team for their World Cup return.

Not since 1970 have Uruguay made a real impression at football's biggest tournament.

If his team give a good account of themselves this June then surely no one will be able to doubt the contribution of Victor Pua.

INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.
TOP STORIES FROM
URUGUAY
 TEAMS
 URUGUAY
Full coverage:
News and
features
Lineker's verdict
Statistics pages
World Cup so far
Have Your Say
BBCMundo.com
 SQUAD PROFILES
 RESULTS/REPORTS

GROUP A
  P GD PTS
DENMARK 3 +3 7
SENEGAL 3 +1 5
URUGUAY 3 -1 2
FRANCE 3 -3 1

 WATCH/LISTEN
 BBC SPORT BULLETINS
 OUR BEST VIDEO
More Audio/Video




© BBC ^ Back to top

Front Page | Statistics | Team Pages | Features | Other News | Sports Talk | TV/Radio Coverage | Photo Galleries | Venues Guide | Matches Wallchart | World Cup Greats | History | Quiz

BBC Sport >> | BBC News >> | BBC Weather >>
BBC World Service >> | BBC Radio Five Live >>
© MMII | News Sources | Privacy