Uruguay defender Diego Godin and midfielder Federico Valverde both hit the woodwork as the South Americans were held to a 0-0 draw by South Korea in their opening World Cup Group H game on Thursday.
Wearing a black mask to protect against a facial fracture, Son Heung-min started for the South Koreans, yet it was teammate Hwang Ui-jo who came closest to breaking the deadlock, but he scooped his shot over the bar with the goal at his mercy.
The best chance of a pulsating first half fell to Uruguay captain Godin, whose glancing header from a corner hit the foot of the left-hand post just before the break.
Valverde fired a stinging shot in the final minute of regulation time that hit the top of the post as the two sides battled to a stalemate in front of a crowd of 41,663, with group rivals Portugal set to meet Ghana later in the evening.
Uruguay: Sergio Rochet, Martin Caceres, Diego Godin, Jose Maria Gimenez, Mathias Olivera, Rodrigo Bentancur, Facundo Pellistri, Matias Vecino, Federico Valverde, Luis Suarez, Darwin Nunez
South Korea: Kim Seung-Gyu, Kim Moon-hwan, Kim Min-Jae, Kim Young-Gwon, Kim Jin-Su, Jung Woo-young, Hwang In-Beom, Lee Jae-sung, Na Sang-ho, Hwang Ui-jo, Son Heung-min