Latin America & Caribbean

South America at the World Cup: Tears and joy

When Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay made it to the quarter-finals, there was hope that this was South America's World Cup - and some thought that they could have monopolised the semifinals.

But Argentina were thrashed 4-0 by Germany, Brazil are now on their way home after a defeat against the Netherlands and Spain beat Paraguay. Only Uruguay made it to the semi-finals after a nerve-wrecking and somewhat controversial match against Ghana.

Our panel of BBC News website readers from the four countries give their reactions to their team's performance and tell how their cities were affected by the results.

Read what the panelists said before the quarter-finals

ARGENTINA

WALTER VALDEZ IN BUENOS AIRES:

Buenos Aires is completely silent.

We know that our sadness will linger for many weeks and will transform into hope for the next World Cup.

In spite of an excellent start in the second-half, with many goal possibilities that didn't materialise, the match finished with a conclusive defeat.

The day before, we were celebrating Brazil's defeat because they are our historical rivals. Now Uruguay looks like the South American country with the strongest possibilities to win the Cup, so our hopes are now with them.

I just hope that a sweet and warm mate tea can lift my heavy heart, saddened by this defeat.

URUGUAY

JUAN ROVELLA IN MONTEVIDEO:

What can I say of the match against Ghana. Was it a miracle? A dream? Divine help? No Uruguayan can come up with an explanation, but the best one I could find is that it was all down to the devotion and courage of the team, what we call "garra charrua."

The match was incredible. In the first half, our hopes were down after our captain was injured and Ghana scored a goal. But we were still faithful.

Then, Uruguay equalised, and then the hand… saved the match. Our top goalscorer saved the Word Cup with a goalkeeper's save. It was unbelievable.

Ghana's penalty miss was celebrated like a goal - the dream was still alive. Suarez transformed into a hero and there was a new "hand of God" - the Uruguayan version.

Come the penalties, we all knew that Abreu's madness was great, but not to that extent!

I shed my first tears of joy because of football on that day. The whole country was joyful. Traffic was brought to a standstill, strangers were hugging strangers.

And after Brazil, Argentina and Paraguay's defeat, we are the only South Americans in the best four teams in the world. I feel incredibly proud.

It remains to see what will happen. But Uruguay is a small country and our forgotten football history has been brought to life. We're on top again.

PARAGUAY

ABEL VILLALBA IN NEMBY:

The streets of Paraguay were full of people wearing white and red shirts and caps. It was a historical day.

Paraguay rewrote their name in history and we shed tears, but tears of dignity. We are preparing a big welcome for the players, because we are aware of their devotion, sacrifice and strength.

All is still to be written and this is just one of the many battles that make history. We will keep writing our destiny.

Brazil was a surprising elimination because they were always favourites. I think they are now preparing themselves for 2014.

I think the Uruguayan celebrations were even heard over here. We were joyful as they have shown the world that when everything fails, character is also a tactic.

We were very optimistic about Argentina, but their spectacular fall broke their hearts. I guess they are all going back to their daily routines.

South Americans are now taking a deep breath and looking ahead with our heads held high, because there is nothing to be ashamed of.

BRAZIL

GREIFELL BORGES ORIGINALLY FROM CRICIUMA, SANTA CATARINA, BUT CURRENTLY IN OXFORD, UK:

The feeling now is the worst ever.

At the beginning, we all had our doubts about the team because Dunga selected a couple of players that we didn't believe would be the best. And when I said "we" I mean more than 90% of Brazilians.

But when the competition started, we weren't playing the most amazing football, but we were going well. This made us believe that we might even win the World Cup. Unfortunately, when we played with a better oponent our team showed us that it just wasn't prepared enough to be a champion.

After our defeat, I'll support Uruguay and I supported Paraguay as they are our neighbours and I think that it would be nice to spread the "South America football power" to the world.

But to be honest with you, I would never have supported Argentina. They are our number one enemies - in football, of course. Not because they have the same quality as the Brazilians, but because they think they have.

They are always comparing Maradona with Pele and, if you take a look at the numbers, no football player in the world compares to Pele.

The World Cup is not the same for me now. I feel sad about the Brazilian defeat but I will still watch it because I'm a football fan. And I'll always believe in our national team, wherever they are. I hope that we regain the quality of our football in 2014 when we host the World Cup.

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