LUIS Suarez reduced England’s chances of World Cup progress to a negligible level last night with two pieces of clinical finishing to earn Uruguay a 2-1 win in Sao Paulo.
The Liverpool striker had headed the South Americans into a first-half lead, only for Wayne Rooney to restore parity in the 75th minute.
But with six minutes remaining, an error from Steven Gerrard saw his Liverpool team-mate scamper away before hammering a shot beyond Joe Hart.
If Costa Rica and Italy draw today, or the Central Americans beat Cesare Prandelli’s team, England will be eliminated with one match to spare.
If Italy win both their remaining games, Uruguay, Costa Rica and England will be tied for second spot, provided that Hodgson’s men beat Costa Rica next Tuesday.
England defender Phil Jagielka said: “It is gutting.
“We played so well in spells but things didn’t go our way.
“Steve Gerrard flicked the ball on, Suarez was onside and you hope he mis-hits one, but he finds the target and he wins the game.
“It is a similar story to Italy; we played pretty well but not good enough. We are very disappointed as defenders, that is the last thing you want to see from a punt down the field.
“Everyone is absolutely devastated in there,” added the former Sheffield United centre-half. “We had them on the back foot after we scored. There is a small chance still. We have to go out there against Costa Rica and put in a good performance and come away with something.”
Match report and World Cup: Page 24.