Uruguay confident with formidable forward line

RUSTENBURG - Uruguay's blend of a watertight defence and slick attack has seen them through to a last 16 clash with South Korea and on current form they will be confident of a first quarter-final berth since 1970.

South Korea will certainly be an appetising prospect for the twice World Cup winners in the second round in Port Elizabeth on Saturday, though captain and defensive rock Diego Lugano was just happy to be leading his countrymen to their first knockout match since 1990.

"We'll keep dreaming of a huge performance in this championship. We've shown a maturity which gives us a lot of confidence," the 29-year-old told reporters.

"We have to take on our next rival in an optimistic mood." Sebastian Abreu was more cautious, but it was impossible to hide his delight and pride in his team, especially the forward pairing of Diego Forlan and Luis Suarez who both had red-hot seasons with their European clubs.

"We're realistic. We're not candidates to win the World Cup but we believe in ourselves," the smiling striker said, his hand-held camera recording every last detail.

"We have the best forwards in the world, we all have so much confidence in them," added the charismatic long-haired player, whose playoff goal helped send his country to South Africa.

Coach Oscar Tabarez said he had "no idea how far his team can go" in a tournament brimming with talent, but his team are ranked 16 to South Korea's 47.

If they win that game, a last eight clash at Johannesburg's impressive Soccer City would be in store.