Nicolas Lodeiro

Seattle Sounders midfielder Nicolás Lodeiro starts, records assist in Uruguay's 2-2 draw with Japan at 2019 Copa América

Lodeiro Uruguay

Seattle Sounders midfielder Nicolás Lodeiro and Uruguay maintained their unbeaten start to the 2019 Copa América on Thursday with a 2-2 draw against Japan at the Arena do Grêmio in Porto Alegre, Brazil.


Lodeiro retained his spot in the Starting XI and played 76 minutes on a stacked Uruguay side after his stellar performance in the group-stage opener.  


Japan drew first blood in the 25th minute Koji Miyoshi settled a long diagonal pass from Gaku Shibasaki, drove inside toward goal and rifled a shot inside the near post. La Celeste equalized minutes later when Luis Suárez calmly dispatched his penalty kick, which was awarded after Video Review, past the Japanese goalkeeper.


The match opened up after halftime, with both teams pushing for the winner in an end-to-end affair. Japan capitalized on the chaos in the 59th minute, as Miyoshi completed his brace with a close-range finish into an empty net.

With Japan looking likely to score a third, decisive goal, Lodeiro stepped up and helped secure a point for his country in the 66th minute. His pinpoint corner kick was met by center back José Giménez, whose glancing header nestled inside the far post.


La Celeste nearly grabbed the winner in the 80th minute through Suárez, but the FC Barcelona striker’s powerful header from inside the box crashed back off the crossbar.


Lodeiro and Uruguay will close out the group stage June 24 with a match against Chile (4 p.m. PT; ESPN+).

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