World Cup: Uruguay fans upset with Suarez over biting incident
Opinion in Uruguay, a country of around three million people sandwiched between soccer powerhouses Argentina and Brazil, was divided over Luis Suarez's latest antics.
The 27-year-old is regarded as something of a hero at home, having grown up in a poor family in the northwestern city of Salto where he looked after parked cars to help support his siblings after his parents split up.
"We needed to win, so if you have to hit you hit, if you have to bite you bite," said Barbara Giordano, a 26-year-old law student in Montevideo.
Some Uruguayans, however, were furious.
"This kid can't control his biting and attacking issues," said Luis Lara, a 52-year-old shopkeeper. "That makes all of us Uruguayans look bad."
Suarez's indiscretion sent the world's social media into meltdown and within minutes of the match ending #Suarez was one of the top-trending hash tags on Twitter.
A tweet from former Liverpool striker Michael Owen was typical of a wave of reaction from former players and pundits: "Tell me I'm seeing things. Surely Suarez didn't bite someone again?," he wrote.
"I'm genuinely gutted. I love watching him play more than any other player but he obviously can't control himself."
Image: Uruguay football fans watch the Group D World Cup match between Uruguay and Italy at Copacabana beach in Rio de Janeiro on Tuesday
Photographs: Mario Tama/Getty Images