James Rodriguez scored an intelligent brace against Uruguay for Colombia in their 2-0 Round of 16 victory. He scored his fifth goal in only four games, and it allowed his nation to make the quarterfinal stage for the very first time in World Cup history.
Colombia played in a 4-4-2, with almost every player attacking and defending as a unit. Their quick passing and open play allowed them to create so much danger against a team that is good defensively. Juan Cuadrado, Rodriguez and Juan Zuniga stood out tremendously in open play, while keeper David Ospina kept the opponents at bay throughout the match with stunning saves.
Uruguay played with five defenders, as their wing-backs constantly pushed up to threaten the four-man Colombian defense. Their biggest absentee was Luis Suarez, who has been suspended for the next four months from all competition following a biting incident earlier in the tournament. He would have been able to assist Edinson Cavani on the scoring front as Diego Forlan kept dropping back into the midfield. Suarez was truly missed in the final third.
Now, Colombia will be facing Brazil in the quarterfinals. Being that this is their first-ever appearance this far in the tournament, it is going to be a bit rough for them to play the five-time champions and hosts. In that game, their midfield and defense will be matched almost perfectly as they have plenty of stars to occupy those positions.
The one advantage they have is a better strike force. Jackson Martinez, Teo Gutierrez and Adrian Ramos have performed at a higher level than Fred and Jo. Being that this is the quarterfinal, nerves and excitement will play a huge factor.