• Hosts Chile take on holders Uruguay in first Copa America quarter-final
  • Chile dominate the first 45 minutes but can’t find a way through
  • Uruguay, led by Diego Godin, defend well to reach half time goalless
  • Edinson Cavani starts despite father being involved in fatal car crash 

Jonny Singer for MailOnline

Hosts Chile go into their Copa America quarter-final looking to carry their form from the group stage into knock-out football.

The home side, with Alexis Sanchez and Arturo Vidal in fine form, scored 10 goals in their opening three games, and will be confident of progressing to the final four.

But Uruguay stand in their way, and although the holders have been relatively poor so far in the tournament, they will be determined not to relinquish their title without a fight.

Join JONNY SINGER for all the action, with updates from MARTIN DOMIN in Santiago.

  • Jonny Singer

    Host commentator

For the first time in this second half Chile really threaten to open up the blue door, but when the ball is pulled back with three men waiting, they just can’t get a shot away.

Alexis Sanchez picks the ball up and goes for a run in the box, but when the tackle comes in he neither goes down nor keeps his momentum, and the chance is gone. 

Just over 15 minutes to go, and still breakthrough for Chile – even against 10 men they are struggling to create anything clear cut.

Vidal tries a volley from the right corner of the box, but it’s into the ground and loops up easily into Muslera’s gloves.

It’s just as well there’s no extra time, the players would be too tired from all the rolling around they’re doing. Yes there having been some meaty challenges but the reactions have been ridiculous. 

Uruguay had actually made an encouraging start to the second half before Cavani was sent off. Chile need to get back to what they do best and keep the ball, although Uruguay are sure to shut up shop.

Chile don’t want this game going to the lottery of penalties, and it’s an aggressive double substitution. Pinilla and Fernandez on for Vargas and Diaz. 

Martin has it spot on with this tweet, remember the first yellow card came from squaring up to a linesman!

On the pitch it’s one-way traffic – Chile had 79% of possession in the first half, it’s going to be more than that in the second. No clear chances though so far

So, what can Chile do now – they’ve struggled to break down 11 men, but surely they will mange against 10, won’t they?

I still don’t really know what to make of that second yellow card – feel free to tell me what you think. It was a stupid thing for Cavani to do, but the contact was minimal. Jara didn’t need to go down. 

More cards now, as Alexis Sanchez takes several kicks, the latest of which earns Maxi Pereira a yellow card.

Chile players surround the referee

What about this. I did say earlier, his head doesn’t seem to be right (completely understandably). And now he has cost his team.

It all comes from nothing, the PSG striker getting involved in an off the ball scrap and he is shown a second yellow card for a flick in the face of Jara. What a disaster for Uruguay.

The striker doesn’t want to go, continuing to fight with Chileans, before chasing back onto the pitch to harangue the referee. Ugly scenes. 

Former Cardiff City player Gary Medel has been one of the better players at this Copa America so far, playing at the back, but that is suicidal!

He swings a pass across his own goal, and straight to an Uruguay player. It doesn’t come to anything much, as Hernandez twice fails to quite link up with Cavani. Lucky boy.

At the other end Vidal arrives at the back post to reach a cross, heading straight at Muslera from a tight angle. 

Abel Hernandez, the Hull City striker who had a shocking season, followed by a shocking group stage, culminating in one of the worst halves of football I’ve ever seen against Paraguay, is coming on. 

It’s Diego Rolan, who in flashes has looked Uruguay’s most threatening player, who is replaced. Is Hernandez going to be Abel to find a winner?

Sanchez just showing some signs of frustration as Chile continue to dominate without any clear chances.

He smashes a shot from 25 yards, but it lacks power or direction, and trickles wide. 

Set pieces really are Uruguay’s main, perhaps their only weapon, and they should be ahead from this one.

A free kick is flighted into the box, and it drops to Diego Rolan, almost completely free, eight yards out.

He seems to panic though, and his shot is straight at Bravo, who holds on. What a chance!

Isla really isn’t a full-back is he? Again he goes marauding down the right hand side, much more a winger than a defender. 

He combines nicely with Alexis Sanchez to win a corner, and the Arsenal man then floats in a delightful cross, before Diaz smashes over the bar. 

Mauricio Isla just wants to be a little bit cautious – booked in the first half he’s already committed a foul on Cristian Rodriguez here, and you never feel a red card is far away today.

Not a lot of goalmouth action at the start of this half, Vidal tried a shot from distance but it was easily saved.

Wowzer, this is a bit better from Cavani, who absolutely hammers the ball from 40 yards on the volley. Just over the bar, and the whistle had already gone for a foul, but signs of life. 

It takes less than a minute for this second half to fall into the pattern of the first, with 21 of the 22 players inside the Uruguay half. 

Alexis Sanchez almost gets on the ball inside the box on the right hand side, before seconds later appearing on the left wing, where he is fouled.

Despite a quiet first half, Alexis is determined to be in the action!

So, in just 45 minutes time, either the hosts will be out, or the holders – or, we may just have a penalty shoot-out. 

Chile have been made to wait on the pitch by Uruguay for the start of this second half, but we’re ready to go now!

To go with Jonny’s stat (see 01.22), Uruguay have knocked out the hosts the last three times they’ve met them, in 1999, 2007 and 2011.

They are the ultimate party-poopers and despite playing second fiddle in the first half, the holders could yet burst another Copa America bubble.

Rik Sharma, out in Chile, thinks 90 minutes and straight to penalties – the format used in this competition – is a recipe for defensive football. 

I’m not sure I agree – certainly the last half of football has been plenty interesting for me – and how often is extra time actually any good?

There’s been a lot of this in the first half – players fighting, arguing with officials, being shown cards.

All of which has made for an enthralling, if slightly scrappy, 45 minutes. 

Chilean midfielder Charles Aranguiz (R) argues with Uruguayan defender Gimenez

Brazilian referee Sandro Ricci shows a yellow card to Chilean midfielder Jorge Valdivia

Uruguayan striker Edison Cavani (R) argues with a linesman

I still want to hear from you, either in the comments below, or on Twitter. What did you think of that first half? 

For what it’s worth, I thought it was cracking – just lacking a goal. But so much passion, a fair bit of skill, bags of commitment. I’d love another 45 like that!

Bergkamp, below, writes: ‘Chile are such a joy to watch; the way they find each other seemingly effortless, the passion, the pace they play with. Or in other words: the exact opposite of England.’

You’re not wrong, Mr B, you’re not wrong!

Chile may have dominated this first 45 minutes, but they haven’t made it count. And as they look for a first ever Copa America title, this stat might just worry them…

No goals so far, but no lack of action. Arturo Vidal is down for the second time in five minutes, this time following an ungainly tackle from Rios. 

He might just take a break until half time, as 0 minutes are held up – only for the referee to ignore that and play one anyway!

That is the break though, goalless at half time. 

Charles Aranguiz’s shot from the edge of the area is the closest we’ve come to a goal so far

Another Uruguay corner, Carlos Sanchez’s delivery is into a good area, but headed away. 

But as the ball breaks back to Sanchez he tries to go past Isla and is brought down. Absolutely no doubt about this booking, however much the former QPR man points to the ball. 

Two bookings apiece now, and a dangerous position for Uruguay to try and exploit… the delivery, unfortunately, is awful. 

How soft is this, in every way?! 

Vargas lays the ball off on the half-way line, and vaguely looks to spin in behind. Fucile, stupidly, slightly blocks him. Vargas, ridiculously, throws himself to the floor. The referee, somewhat harshly, shows a yellow card.

No-one comes out of that looking very good!

At last, a bit of Uruguay possession inside the Chile half. A long ball is launched forward towards Diego Godin, and he is rewarded with a corner.

Bravo punches, semi-convincingly, but that was better from the men in blue. 

If there is one criticism to be had about this Chile team, it’s that they over-play the ball slightly. 

After Vidal tears a hole on the Uruguay defence and feeds Isla the ball comes to Valdivia, on the volley, inside the box. He has to shoot, but instead tries to take a clever touch, and gets it wrong – the chance goes.

Vidal goes to the other extreme a minute later, smashing a shot at goal from 30 yards, and Muslera has to punch away the swinging, dipping ball. Great hit!

Charles Aranguiz has a shout for handball inside the box, but the officials are having none of it – I have to say, without having seen a replay, it looked pretty innocuous. Indeed, it is, no intent there.

Sanchez cuts in from the left again and again tries a shot with his right foot, but it’s high and wide. Chile are absolutely dominant at the moment. 

Another poor tackle, another dangerous position for a Chile free kick, but again the Uruguayan defence stands firm. 

Four times in a minute Chile put the ball into the box, but the best they can muster in the way of shots is a header for Alexis Sanchez, arriving late and off balance at the back post. 

He throws himself at the ball low down, but it goes miles wide. 

Edinson Cavani’s head  might not be fully in this, and he loses his cool completely here.

Penalised for a pretty straightforward foul on Vidal insdie his own half, he squares up to the linesman – and it looked like he was about to nut him! 

Fortunately it doesn’t go as far as that, but a yellow card for the long-haired Uruguayan. He needs to calm down.

Chile still coming forward in numbers and at pace as Vidal this time tries to open the Uruguay defence up – and is denied by the referee as he plays it straight into the official, who almost falls over!

Still precious little from Alexis Sanchez so far, the Arsenal man is being well marshalled. 

Valdivia is causing all sorts of problems for Uruguay, and again his creativity brings a chance as he flicks the ball on to Aranguiz on the edge of the box.

It all opens up for the midfielder, but his shot is tame, low and straight at Muslera. That was a real chance. 

After a bright start from Uruguay, Chile have started to dominate proceedings albeit without creating too much in front of goal.

Led by Diego Godin, Uruguay’s backline won’t be giving anything away cheaply and some of Chile’s prettier attacks often peter out.

Ouch! Vargas chases the ball as it rolls through to Muslera, and might just have left a foot in on the Uruguay keeper. That’s what Gimenez thinks anyway, and the two square up, before being joined by several others.

The officials do their best to calm it down, and it’s stern words rather than any cards this time. A bit tasty though…

What a hit this is, from Carlos Sanchez (not the Colombian Aston Villa midfielder, but the Uruguayan).

On the edge of the box he smashes a dipping ball across goal – Bravo looked fairly confident it was always going wide, and indeed it did. But that moved a mile and was well-struck. 

Eduard Vargas has had Chile’s best effort so far, volleying over the bar, while Edinson Cavani has struggled to get involved.

The home fans are not happy, and you can see why. Jose Gimenez crunches through the back of Eduardo Vargas, and no foul is given.

It looks like Valdivia is trying to gain a bit of revenge moments later when he goes in on the Atletico Madrid defender – but actually, replays show almost no contact. The Chile No 10 is booked. 

Marcelo Diaz is not the first Chile player to put in a silly tackle, and is not the first to be fortunate to escape a booking. 

Uruguay launch a rare attack, but the ball in is relatively easily gathered by Bravo low down. 

Pretty lively game so far this, a noticeable step up in intensity from some of the group games. 

So much better from Chile all of a sudden, they are playing with real verve now. Isla again is a prime threat, whipping in a dangerous ball from the byline, but it is cleared away.

Moments later Alexis Sanchez gets his foot on the ball inside the box, bounces off a tackle with that supremely low centre of gravity that he has, and tries to curl a shot into the far corner.

A deflection takes all the sting out of the effort though, and it’s easily through to Muslera in the Uruguay goal. 

That is delightful! Valdivia leaves Fucile on the seat of his pants with a brilliant nutmeg as Chile spring a quick attack. 

It earns them a corner – from which nothing is produced – but a huge moral victory for the winger over his fullback early on. 

Another silly challenge from a Chilean midfielder, as Valdivia goes in late. This really isn’t the sort of stuff they need to be engaging in. 

Still Alexis Sanchez can’t get into the game, spending more time arguing with the officials than on the ball!

Chile’s Gonzalo Jara and Uruguay’s Diego Rolan fight for the ball

A first shot for Chile, who despite their possession haven’t really been able to get Alexis Sanchez or Eduardo Vargas on the ball in dangerous areas before now.

They do here though, as Isla combines with Valdivia down the right, and his cross is deflected into the path of former QPR team-mate Vargas.

The striker volleys well over, but that was dangerous. 

Aranguiz now gets a telling off from the referee himself, going in late (but with no great force) on Uruguay skipper Diego Godin. The centre back made a meal of that one!

The stadium is still pretty noisy, but Uruguay doing their best to quieten it. 

A first sight of Charles Aranguiz, who was excellent against Bolivia – and he is immediately chopped down.

I fear we may see a lot of that sort of tackling tonight. 

The hosts keeping the ball well early on, and boos ring out whenever the men in blue get the ball. I’d expect Uruguay to sit back and try to absorb pressure, and that’s certainly the pattern in the opening two minutes. 

But it’s they who have the first opening, Diego Rolan breaking at pace and sliding the ball through for Cavani – only a last-ditch sliding tackle stops that getting through to the PSG front-man inside the box with only the keeper to beat.

Moments later Claudio Bravo comes for a cross and drops the ball, before the pressure is lifted when Cristian Rodgriguez hammers over the bar. 

A short, sharp blast from the referee’s whistle, and Chile get us going. Hold on to your hats!

Given that two thirds of the teams who started this competition are still in it, this feels like the start of the tournament proper. Save for a few patches of Uruguayan fans, the Estadio Nacional is wrapped in a blanket of red.

But Chile have a terrible record against Uruguay, winning just two of their last 12 meetings.

And remember, no extra time tonight, straight to penalties if we’re level after 90 minutes.

National anthems are belted out, as a giant Chile flag passes around the ground. Great atmosphere in Santiago.

As ever, let me remind you, you can watch the game live with our friends at Premier Sports. 

You can also get in touch, either by tweeting me (@jonny_singer) or commenting below. 

‘Rooting for Chilie! Good luck from Oranje,’ says Dutchie007 fan from San Diego, while likeafire responds ‘Come on Uruguay! Do it for King Luis!’

Loyalties split so far then! Keep them coming!

Here come the fair play flags, and behind them the players. 

Both teams will feel like this is almost a semi-final – because a win tonight earns a semi-final against either Bolivia or Peru. As Chile showed in their last game, these two are a level above those sides. 

No question who the crowd are supporting, the hosts have packed out Estadio Nacional which is a sea of red.

Almost ready for the players now – but have a read of this article about why Chile are now the tournament favourites before we start!

As you may have noticed from the line-ups, PSG striker Edinson Cavani – so important to this Uruguay side in the absence of Luis Suarez – starts tonight.

There was plenty of doubt that he would play, after his father was involved in a fatal car crash, in which a 19-year-old died, but the long-haired striker will be out there. 

Uruguay need him to be fully focused. 

Arturo Vidal may have crashed his car while under the influence of alcohol, but the Chile star has also powered his team to the quarter-finals – so he remains pretty popular here.

As these brilliant ‘King Arturo’ picture shows!

Only 20 minutes to go until kick off, and Sportsmail’s Martin Domin is ready to go in the Estadio Nacional in Santiago.

But while he, and all of you, wait for the action, check out these two beauties we’ve got for you. 

First up, how about the best goals of the group stage –  that should whet your appetite, especially as Chile feature twice!

Then, if you still want some more, have a watch of this, the best skills of the first 18 matches. South American samba!

A little more variation from Uruguay, who failed to impress in their group games, scoring only twice.

The hapless Hull striker Abel Hernandez – who was subbed at half time against Paraguay – drops to the bench with Cristian Rodriguez coming in, as captain Diego Godin returns from suspension to replace Sunderland’s Sebastian Coates.

Alvaro Pereira drops out through suspension himself, and he is replaced by Jorge Fucile.

Uruguay: Muslera, M Pereira, Gimenez, Godin, Fucile, C Sanchez, Rios, Gonzalez, Rodriguez, Rolan, Cavani 

Just the one change for Chile from the side that dispatched Bolivia 5-0 in their final group game, with Eugenio Mena coming in at left back ahead of Jean Beausejour. Not an unexpected change that. 

That means Arturo Vidal, the tournament’s top scorer, will continue behind Arsenal star Alexis Sanchez and former QPR loanee Eduardo Vargas. 

Chile: Bravo, Isla, Medel, Jara, Mena, Aranguiz, Diaz, Vidal, Valdivia, A Sanchez, Vargas

That’s right, we’re now at the business end of the competition, and what better way to start than with the hosts against the holders. 

Chile are red-hot favourites tonight, but however poor they’ve been, you’d be a brave man to bet against Uruguay.

Kick off is exactly half an hour away!

We may be 18 games into this competition. We may have seen 40 goals, and seen four teams go home.

We’ve had some stunning goals, thrilling comebacks, sultry South America skills. We’ve even seen one of the stars leave in disgrace.  

But, really, not a lot of that mattered. Now is when the real action starts.



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