MONTEVIDEO - A goal by Diego Forlan set Uruguay on the way to a 2-0 World Cup qualifying win over group leaders Paraguay on Saturday. Captain Diego Lugano also scored with a header as Paraguay suffered their second defeat in 11 games in South American qualifying. Paraguay have 23 points and are still on course for their fourth successive World Cup finals, having started the weekend six points ahead of second-placed Brazil who visit Ecuador on Sunday. Twice world champions Uruguay have 16 points. Paraguay looked dangerous early as Salvador Cabanas had a free kick turned round the post by Sebastian Viera and Dario Veron almost scored with a diving header from the resulting corner. Nelson Haedo Valdez also went close with a dipping shot on the run. However, Uruguay made the breakthrough in the 29th minute when Alvaro Pereira found Luis Suarez with a long, cross-field ball. CONSTANT HANDFUL The Ajax Amsterdam forward, a constant handful for the Paraguay defence, cut inside Paulo da Silva and pulled the ball back for Forlan to roll it into an empty net for his fifth goal of the competition. Lugano headed a Suarez centre over the bar and Alvaro Pereira shot across the face of the goal as Uruguay continued to attack while Haedo Valdez found the side-netting with another ferocious volley for Paraguay. Aureliano Torres had a chance to equalise before halftime but shot wildly over. Haedo Valdez went close with another long-range shot after halftime before Lugano added the second, the Fenerbahce defender outjumping his marker at the far post to head in a free kick in the 57th minute.
28 March 2009
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