Sao Paulo, Brazil (SportsNetwork.com) - Luis Suarez made a triumphant debut in the 2014 World Cup, bagging a brace to lead Uruguay to a 2-1 defeat of England at the Arena Corinthians on Thursday.
The Liverpool man was recovering from knee surgery when Uruguay opened the tournament with a defeat to Costa Rica on Saturday, but he started Thursday's clash against England and put the South American side in front in the 39th minute.
Wayne Rooney brought England level in the 75th minute with his first-ever World Cup goal, but Suarez struck five minutes from time to doom the Three Lions to their second loss of the competition, leaving them on the brink of elimination.
England made a bright start in Thursday's affair and came within inches of opening the scoring in the 10th minute. The Three Lions were awarded a free kick at the edge of the box following Diego Godin's blatant hand ball, and the infraction resulted in a yellow card for the defender. Rooney took the ensuing free kick and sent a shot just inches away from the upper corner.
Uruguay answered five minutes later when Cristian Rodriguez collected Phil Jagielka's hash of a clearance but sent a first-time effort just over the crossbar.
England was unfortunate not to go up a man in the 29th minute when Godin broke up a give-and-go by bringing Daniel Sturridge to the ground. It was a professional foul, but referee Carlos Velasco Carballo failed to brandish a caution and the Atletico Madrid defender was allowed to remain in the match.
The Three Lions produced their best chance of the opening period two minutes later when Steven Gerrard's cross to the back post was met by Rooney, but the Manchester United striker only managed to turn his header off the post.
England would come to rue its inefficiency in front of goal when Uruguay finally broke the deadlock in the 39th minute. Edinson Cavani picked out Suarez with an inch-perfect cross that eluded Jagielka and allowed the Liverpool striker to nod a shot past Joe Hart.
Uruguay had a tremendous chance to add to its lead in the 52nd minute when Nicolas Lodeiro slipped a through ball in for Cavani, but the PSG striker sliced his effort wide of goal.
Two minutes later, it was England's turn to create a gilt-edged opportunity as Leighton Baines squared a pass to the top of the six-yard box, but Rooney's attempt was stopped by goalkeeper Fernando Muslera.
England continued to pepper the Uruguay net with a flurry of shots and eventually got its just reward in the 75th minute when Glen Johnson broke free on the right flank and slid a low pass across the face of goal. Muslera was unable to get a hand to the delivery, allowing Rooney to tuck it home from close range to break his 10-match run in World Cup play without a goal.
But Suarez would have the last laugh as he broke through for the winner in the 85th minute. The Liverpool striker latched on to a long ball over the top of the England defense and hammered a shot past Hart, giving the Uruguayans a great chance of advancing to the knockout round.
"We won because they were fighting," Uruguay coach Oscar Tabarez said. "It was not to do with the training, but the persistence and will of my players. Maybe we don't play very attractive football but we have players who give everything on the field. They're very well prepared they have a very close relationship among themselves. They love their country and for us this is very important. We will try to do the same as we did today. A World Cup is something difficult. Tomorrow we need to focus on our next match. Our objective is to go the next stage."
England, meanwhile, would be eliminated from the World Cup with a draw between Italy and Costa Rica on Friday.