Tabarez calls for calm after progression

Uruguay coach Oscar Tabarez feels comfortable, despite the defending champions' unconvincing group-stage performance.

Oscar Tabarez called for Uruguay to continue calmly on their path in the Copa America, after they limped into the quarter-finals via a 1-1 draw against Paraguay on Saturday.

Defending champions Uruguay sealed their place in the knockout stages as one of the best third-placed teams at the tournament, after Jose Gimenez's 29th-minute opener was cancelled out by Lucas Barrios on the stroke of half-time in La Serena.

Uruguay finished adrift of Argentina and Paraguay in Group B, and will now face host nation Chile in the quarter-finals in Santiago on June 24.

"I don't know if the performance in making the knockout stages has been good," Tabarez said afterwards. "I am comforted that we are through despite the criticism directed at the team.

"I'll take the experience and knowledge I have as a coach. Things were never easy for us and this team had to play against Argentina and Chile which are tough.

"We rely on the data from these games to try and get better, we fought to win every match but I know we have things to improve.

"Above all we need to be calm and not rush and during the second half today we had some difficult moments where we couldn't keep hold of the ball in midfield.

"We will continue on our path. I have a very clear idea of how to coach a team and be the trainer of a group of players. It is very different to play in a team than to manage it but we have shown what we can achieve in these last nine years."

Tabarez also refused to draw comparisons with the punishment handed to Brazil captain Neymar and the one given to Uruguay star Luis Suarez at last year's World Cup.

Neymar was banned for four matches after clashing with Colombia players on Wednesday.

"In any event there are courts taking disciplinary measures according to regulations. About Neymar I cannot speak," he added.

"I saw what happened at the game, I do not want to make any kind of comparison, but I think that we should not reach the mistreatment of the players, as happened with Suarez."