Jose Gimenez spared Uruguay from a stuttering start at the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

The Uruguay defender headed in the winning goal Friday against Egypt in the 89th minute of their 2018 World Cup opener. Uruguay now moves level on points with Russia in Group A, although “La Celeste” still trails the host nation on goal difference.

Uruguay was favored to win, but its day seemed destined to end in disappointment due to Egypt’s dogged defending and its own inability to create many scoring chances. Meanwhile, the Pharaohs weathered Mohamed Salah’s absence and looked to earn a surprise point through collective effort.

All this was the case until Egypt gave away a last-minute free kick, which Carlos Sanchez lofted into Egypt’s penalty area.

Sanchez is in the lineup for his defensive prowess but he’s showing a knack for goal-scoring lately.

Egypt is back in the World Cup for the first time since 1990, but its wait for a first win continues.

Man of the match: Egypt goalkeeper Mohamed El Shenawy backstopped Egypt’s determined defense and made three saves.

Next up
Egypt plays Russia on Tuesday, and Uruguay takes on Saudi Arabia on Wednesday in the teams’ second Group A game.

Click for the World Cup 2018 schedule >>

Click for our World Cup 2018 groups predictions >>

Thumbnail photo via Winslow Townson/USA TODAY Sports Images