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Illawarra Mercury

Uruguay consul's passionate plea

Date: 05/11/2002
Words: 254
          Publication: Illawarra Mercury
Section: Sport
Page: 79
SOCCER taking over as the number one sport is all that is needed for Australia to become the perfect place to live, according to Uruguayan consul-general Ana Maria Esteves.

Ms Esteves yesterday met with Wollongong Lord Mayor Alex Darling and Wollongong Wolves players and officials ahead of the November 12 clash between the Wolves and Uruguayan giants Penarol at WIN Stadium.

Forty-six Uruguayan league championships, five Copa Libertadores titles and three World Club Championships (the last in 1982) are the credentials that the mighty Penarol will bring with them to Australia next week.

Ms Esteves said the interest that has been shown by the Uruguayan and Latin American communities towards the visit would hopefully result in plenty of support at Penarol's matches against Wollongong and Marconi.

``For the Uruguayan and Latin American people who live in this country and love it so much the only thing they miss is that this is not a soccer country," Ms Esteves said.

Penarol have an age old rivalry with fellow Uruguayan giants Nacional, but that will be put on hold for their short Australian tour.

Wolves midfielder Alex Castro was born in Uruguay and said the clash with the team he has supported since he was a child was something he was very much looking forward to.

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