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Cavani: England game 'like a final'

ESPN staff
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Uruguay striker Edinson Cavani says his team's next World Cup group fixture against England is a "must-win" game.

Uruguay suffered a shock 3-1 defeat to unfancied Costa Rica in their first Group D game on Saturday, hours before before England were beaten 2-1 by Italy in their opener. Those results mean both sides now need to win Thursday's clash in Sao Paulo to remain in control of their chances of making the last 16.

The Paris Saint-Germain striker told Marca that he believed his side - which reached the semi-finals in the 2010 tournament and won the 2011 Copa America - had the experience to move on from the surprise defeat and do what was needed to progress.

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"The only thing we can do is lift our heads, and move to play England and Italy," Cavani said. "Those games were already important for us, but now they are like two finals. The only result that counts for us is to win in both.

"This group of players has come through difficult moments many times. We just want now to go further in the World Cup. We will fight hard to be there."

Cavani's team-mate Martin Caceres has admitted that the manner of Saturday's defeat, when the usually secure Uruguay defence gave up three second half goals to Costa Rica, had been very difficult to accept.

The versatile defender told news agency EFE that he and his colleagues at the back had lost focus thinking the game was already over when they were ahead at half-time.

"We had the game controlled and were winning 1-0," Caceres said. "I cannot find an explanation for what happened on the pitch, to end up losing. The only thing that comes to mind is that we did not pay attention at the start of the second half. They scored two goals with high balls, and dealing with this is [supposed to be] one of our strengths.

"We must leave behind what has happened and think just about England, and how to win this game, which is now decisive," Caceres said.

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