Stanislav Cherchesov and Oscar Tabarez will have to juggle pragmatism and momentum on Monday when Uruguay and Russia clash in Samara.
Both teams have won their opening two matches - in contrasting fashion - and already qualified for the round of 16.
Andrei Kanchelskis may have described them pre-tournament as "the worst Russian team I have ever seen" but that kind of negativity has not rubbed off on Cherchesov's men, who swept past Saudi Arabia 5-0 on opening night before subduing Egypt and Mohamed Salah to make it six points from six.
Uruguay, on the other hand, have been less entertaining and less convincing.
A 1-0 defeat of Egypt was mirrored against Saudi Arabia but Tabarez's side undoubtedly have more to prove in their last group game.
Their struggles so far mean a shake-up in midfield is likely, with Sampdoria's Lucas Torreira a certain inclusion after impressing as a substitute against the Saudis.
Elsewhere, the South Americans must decide whether to rest strike duo Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani while defenders Jose Gimenez and Diego Godin may also be preserved for the tougher tests to come - Spain or Portugal most likely await next.
For Russia, it's a case of maintaining the impetus - and the feelgood factor that has swept across the country - while giving some fringe-players match time.
Left-back Yuri Zhirkov is one player who could sit out, despite returning from a foot injury to keep Salah quiet in the 3-1 victory on Tuesday.
Team doctor Eduard Bezuglov said: "After the game against Saudi Arabia, Yuri had a foot tendon injury. He did a great job recovering, doing everything the doctors required of him.
"Everybody admired Salah for how he went back after his shoulder injury in less than a month. Believe me, Zhirkov had a problem at least as severe as Salah but he went to play anyway and proved his top level.
"Now he's recovered and will prepare to for the next game."
Russia's players are clearly enjoying their new-found status having been widely ridiculed in the build-up to the World Cup and Aleksandr Golovin has been overwhelmed by the backing.
He told FIFA.com: "The atmosphere of the World Cup can't be compared to anything. It's just crazy.
"Even Champions League games against big clubs like Manchester United can't be compared to this. Obviously because the World Cup is in our country most of the fans support us in every game.
"It's very nice to see such passionate support, full stadiums in each game. This is necessary for our team."
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Uruguay - Lucas Torreira
The 22-year-old from Fray Bentos, widely linked with Arsenal, is set to be handed the chance to stake a claim for a place in Tabarez's midfield. Neat in possession, he will hope to provide a level of control missing in Uruguay's games in Russia so far.
Russia - Aleksandr Golovin
Has covered more ground - 25 kilometres - than any other player at the tournament and has emerged as the driving force of the 'new' Russia.
KEY OPTA FACTS
- Russia have won six of their eight meetings against Uruguay (D1 L1; includes games as the Soviet Union). However, both nations have a win apiece at World Cup finals.
- Russia have lost each of their last four World Cup meetings with South American sides, scoring just once - including their 1970 World Cup loss to Uruguay.
- Russia have scored more goals in this World Cup (8) than they had in their previous two World Cup tournaments combined (6, across 2002 and 2014).
- Each of the last three European host nations of a World Cup prior to 2018 have won all three of their group stage games (Germany 2006, France 1998, Italy 1990).
- Russia have a positive goal difference of +7 in their opening two World Cup matches in the 2018 tournament. All three of the previous host nations to have a +5 goal difference or more in their opening two games of that World Cup have gone on to win the tournament: France (+7) in 1998, Italy (+6) in 1934 and Uruguay (+5) in 1930.
- Fernando Muslera could win his 100th cap for Uruguay in this match (currently on 99) and would become the seventh player to reach the landmark for La Celeste.
- Denis Cheryshev is Russia's top scorer in the tournament with three goals – prior to their opener against Saudi Arabia, he had failed to find the net in 11 appearances for the national team.
23. Juli 2018
|Manziel traded to Montreal Alouettes|
|Pirates top Reds to extend winning streak to nine|
|Minnesota United 5 Los Angeles FC 1: Five-star hosts shock LAFC|
|Prospect of Anthony joining Rockets excites Harden|
|Mets place Syndergaard on DL with hand, foot and mouth disease|
|Cubs, Baez give young fan signed baseball after adult steals foul ball|
|To those who enjoy seeing others fail, I feel for you – Karius responds to criticism|
|Barbasol Championship final round to resume on Monday due to thunderstorms|
|You can´t do whatever you want in life – Mourinho responds to Martial exit talk|
|Harvick bumps Busch out of way for victory|
|Klopp hails Dortmund star Pulisic after Liverpool loss|
|Fellow pro reveals Open winner Molinari´s retirement plans|
|Manchester United 0 San Jose Earthquakes 0: Sanchez returns in uninspiring draw|
|Laporte jealous of France World Cup winners|
|Tamim fires Bangladesh to ODI success|
|Liverpool 1 Borussia Dortmund 3: Pulisic inspires comeback to deny Klopp win against old club|
22. Juli 2018
|My game is back - Spieth finds Open positives despite tough final round|
|Barcelona pay tribute to retiring Marquez|
|Blow for Thomas and Froome as Moscon is excluded|
|Woods earns WGC-Bridgestone Invitational place with rankings boost|
|Clay specialist Cecchinato lifts Croatia title on return to red dirt|
|Molinari´s safety-first masterclass yields deserved Open triumph|
|Alisson to link up with Liverpool at Evian training camp|
|Woods´ return no fluke, insists Spieth|
|Johnson shrugs off shoulder injury to win second 2018 title|
|The Open 2018 diary: Kane an able golfer, hats off to Hossler|
|Tiger and Serena will talk through Open disappointment|
|Molinari: It wasn´t about being ruthless to beat Woods|
|Tiger ´ticked off´ at missed Open opportunity|
|The Open 2018: Molinari triumphs - how a dramatic final round unfolded|
|McIlroy: Great to be back in the mix|
|Open victory will take a long time to sink in, says Molinari|
|Stoke sign McClean from West Brom for £5m|
|Masterful Molinari clinches sublime Open win after Spieth, Woods fall away|
|Germany´s Ozil retires from international football|
|Vikings OL coach Tony Sparano dies|
|BREAKING NEWS: Magical Molinari wins The Open|
|Dalic claims to be world´s second best coach|
|Twelve-try Wakefield batter Hull to send Rhinos into Qualifiers|
|Sevastova cruises to Bucharest title|
|Cort Nielsen sprints to first Tour stage win, Thomas maintains lead|
|Sarri needs support to deliver Chelsea success - Zola|
|Pjanic and Rugani in Juventus tour squad as Ronaldo and World Cup stars are rested|
|Eagle has McIlroy soaring into a five-way tie for the lead at Carnoustie|
|Vettel will not lose any sleep after Hockenheim mistake|
|I manifested my dream – Hamilton revels in Hockenheim win|
|Pakistan seal crushing series sweep of Zimbabwe|
|Furious Ozil accuses German media of turning country against him|
|Woods makes his move as Spieth and Schauffele wobble|
|Vettel crash sees Hamilton retake championship lead|
|RFEF confirms one-legged Supercopa de Espana in Tangier|
|Fognini downs Gasquet to clinch Swedish Open|
|Spieth and Tiger underway as Kisner falls back|
|Iniesta, Torres suffer defeats in their J.League debuts|
|Cornet ends title drought in Gstaad|
|Martial ´very focused´ at Manchester United - Herrera|
|Root, Williamson and Bairstow - hat-trick hero Clark flourishes in Roses battle|
|Sri Lanka spinning towards crushing series whitewash|
|Ozil explains controversial Erdogan meeting|
|It´ll be hard for Tuchel to get our players – Kovac expects Boateng stay|
|Fakhar Zaman fastest to 1,000 ODI runs|
|Neymar happy for World Cup winner Mbappe|
|I was born ready! - Bellew accepts Usyk challenge|
|Tuchel seeks Rabiot answers as Barca rumours persist|
|In-form Storm go top, Rampant Roosters thrash Manly|
|Bancroft discharged from hospital after taking blow to throat|
|MLS Review: Martinez breaks record as Atlanta march on|
|Brewers top Dodgers to snap seven-game losing streak|
|Munguia wins after 12-round marathon with Smith|
|Hart ready to leave City to revive career|