Santos shares Portugal's sadness but hopes Ronaldo will remain

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Coach Oscar Tabarez is anxious ahead Friday's showdown with France with Suarez confident that Uruguay can cope without Cavani if the striker does not recover from the injury.

It set up a knockout stage meeting with two-time champions Uruguay, who topped Group A with maximum points ahead of hosts Russia, Saudi Arabia and Egypt.

Prior to the World Cup, Ronaldo led Real Madrid to its third straight Champions League title, but he arrived in Russian Federation surrounded by distractions about his club future and a tax fraud accusation back in Madrid.

It should be noted that both Ronaldo and Messi would be 37 and 35 respectively when the next World Cup comes around.

Cavani has scored three goals for Uruguay so far in Russian Federation, and Keown believes their chances of progressing further in the tournament would be diminished without him.

Ronaldo's great start in Russian Federation allowed him to surpass the combined total of three goals he had scored in his previous three World Cups.

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It is still unclear if Cavani will start the France game on the bench or not.

Suarez spoke at a press conference after the session and, in quotes reported by goal.com, the Barcelona forward said of Cavani: "The two goals he scored the other day, the team work he has in general, his physical exertion...all of it is important". During the run of play, Portugal rarely got any clear looks at goal.

Argentina's hopes of going one step better than a narrow defeat to Germany in the 2014 final were ended by a 4-3 loss to Les Bleus, with Ronaldo quickly following Messi out of the tournament.

Edinson Cavani scored twice as Uruguay shattered Cristiano Ronaldo's World Cup dream with a 2-1 victory over Portugal here Saturday.

Portugal have lost each of their last nine World Cup games in which they've conceded the first goal. "That is our best chance against any adversary, and we know that France will be very tough indeed".

"We are here to play all seven matches, right up until the final, and we will see what happens", he said. "We already have a new competition in September (UEFA Nations League) and obviously we want Cristiano to be with us". "I'm very happy that Mbappe is a French citizen".

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