Luis Suarez stuck to the script by scoring on his 100th international appearance for Uruguay, but you could be forgiven for thinking Russia were playing on Wednesday at Rostov Arena, where the loudest chants were neither for the Celeste nor their opponents Saudi Arabia.
Instead it was the fans of a resurgent host nation who made their presence felt, as they embarked on a noisy scouting mission ahead of what now looms as an unexpectedly decisive showdown to determine the winners of Group A at the World Cup.
Uruguay have played the part that was expected of them, edging past Egypt and overcoming the Saudis to reach the round of 16, where Portugal, Iran or Spain will lie in wait.
But the hosts have surprised everyone, including themselves, to make a flying start to the tournament.
Not since Euro 2008, when Guus Hiddink took a team inspired by Andrey Arshavin to the semi-finals, have Russia bestrode the international stage with such confidence.
Despite having failed to win any of their previous seven friendlies leading up to their big party, a 5-0 thrashing of Saudi Arabia in the opening game was followed by a convincing 3-1 win over Mohamed Salah's Egypt, as Denis Cheryshev, rather than the stricken Liverpool star, fired himself into early golden boot contention with his third goal of the finals.
That result sparked scenes of wild celebration across this vast and eclectic country, and the knock-on effect was plain to see a day later on the banks of the Don River.
As well as a smattering of Saudi green and a healthy representation of Uruguay's sky blue, the colours of Russia were prominent among supporters making their way to the ground and in the stands.
Indeed, the first chant of the match was not for Uruguay or the Saudis.
Rather, a guttural cry of "Ro-ssi-ya, Ro-ssi-ya!" rose up in the first 10 minutes, and did so again sporadically throughout the contest.
After lying dormant amid a series of recent embarrassments, football fever has once again gripped the Russian Federation.
The buoyancy of Stanislav Cherchesov's team will be greatly welcomed by FIFA and all of those attending the event, with the exception, of course, of Uruguay.
Oscar Tabarez's side might have expected Egypt, before Salah injured his shoulder in the Champions League final, to pose the biggest threat to their ambitions of advancing as group winners.
Instead it will be Cheryshev, Artem Dzyuba and Aleksandr Golovin barring their path, not to mention what is sure to be a vociferous, partisan crowd at Samara Arena, and 144 million more people roaring them on from Kaliningrad to Vladivostok.
Uruguay will be no pushovers. But they laboured, admittedly in difficult conditions, against Saudi Arabia in a manner Russia did not, and should steal themselves for a searching examination against the 2018 World Cup's most welcome surprise package.
|Deschamps praises Griezmann for Giroud gesture|
|Warriors star Curry improving, still out at least three more games|
|Chile 4 Honduras 1: Sanchez, Vidal shine for La Roja|
|Argentina 2 Mexico 0: Icardi, Dybala score first international goals|
|Mickelson calls Tiger the greatest of all time|
|Durant fined $25,000 for using inappropriate language|
|Fizdale isn´t concerned about Knicks´ losing streak|
|No particular concern for Mbappe – Deschamps|
|PSG team-mate Choupo-Moting hopes Neymar injury is not serious|
|McLeish marvels at stylish Scotland´s promotion success|
|Draw proves Poland can play well without Lewandowski – Brzeczek|
|Giggs: Wales let themselves down|
|Sarachan ´moved USA forward´ in interim spell|
|Mickelson lays $200,000 bet with Woods for first hole|
|Dolphins QB Tannehill to start against Colts|
|Murcia edge out Banvit, Bonn crush Opava|
|Neymar injury not serious, says doctor|
|Mancini: Italy ahead of schedule|
|France 1 Uruguay 0: Giroud hits the spot after Mbappe injury blow|
|Portugal 1 Poland 1: Milik penalty salvages precious point as Danilo sees red|
|Italy 1 United States 0: Politano snatches late winner for Mancini´s men|
|Scotland 3 Israel 2: Forrest hat-trick seals Nations League promotion|
|Brazil 1 Cameroon 0: Richarlison fills Neymar´s boots as skipper suffers injury|
|France & PSG star Mbappe suffers shoulder injury|
|Albania 1 Wales 0: Gunter´s night spoiled by Balaj|
|Leeds and Manchester United to meet in friendly|
|Outspoken Smith leaves Cavaliers|
|PSG star Neymar injured for Brazil|
|Juventus midfielder Can back in training after surgery|
|Rams-Chiefs rollercoaster was the NFL´s modern-day masterpiece|
|Ronaldo an AC Milan target in 2017, confirms Fassone|
|Farah could get back on track at Tokyo Olympics|
|PSG still waiting on Alves and Kurzawa|
|Atalanta reject Gasperini to AC Milan speculation|
|Edmonton Oilers name Hitchcock new head coach|
|JR Smith on Cleveland Cavaliers: Tanking ´was always the plan´|
|Chester signs new Wakefield deal|
|F1 Raceweek: Countdown on to Alonso farewell|
|Rain disrupts Lorenzo´s Honda debut|
|VAR a possibility for Champions League knockout rounds|
|FFP vulnerable in areas, says UEFA president Ceferin|
|Sri Lanka draft in uncapped Peiris to replace Dananjaya|
|Coman back in Bayern training but Lewandowski has knee injury|
|Qalandars land De Villiers in PSL draft, Smith second pick|
|F1 changes helped less talented drivers on the grid - Alonso|
|Agnelli: No super league talks since 2015|
|I hope from now on it only gets better - Floersch update on horror crash|
|Calf injury rules Ashton out of Australia match|
|Halfpenny to miss South Africa clash|
|Hard for Lazio to hold on to Milinkovic-Savic, says Lotito|
|Australia´s next generation pay tribute to retiring Cahill|
|Bairstow pushing hard for Test recall|
|Cane eyes 2019 Super Rugby return after neck break|
|Van Dijk finds time to console referee during Dutch delight|
|Cahill sheds tear at end of phenomenal Australia career|
|WATCH: Pelicans coach Gentry interviews himself|
|Where does Chiefs-Rams classic rank among NFL´s highest-scoring matches?|
|Australia 3 Lebanon 0: Boyle bags brace on Cahill farewell|
|Guendouzi underlines desire to represent France|
|I might need a couple of drinks to relax after that! - Rams coach McVay|
|Juventus´ Alex Sandro has Premier League ambition|
|Ederson taking goalkeeping to another level, says City hero Weaver|
|Ceferin dismisses "super league" plans as fiction|
|Rams defeat Chiefs in one of the highest scoring games in NFL history|
|Kemba Walker leads Hornets to win over Celtics|
|Gomez praises ´top player´ Van Dijk, Stones|
|Cricket Australia to maintain Smith, Warner ball tampering bans|
|Brazil´s Tite encouraged by Neymar captaincy|
|Holmes set for NFL switch after Cronulla release|
|Dier encourages English youngsters to follow Sancho´s lead|