Coach Oscar Tabarez spoke ahead of the game about his team's togetherness and deep-rooted unity, with many of his players having first emerged during Uruguay's 2011 Copa America triumph, and their club mentality was on show against Portugal.
Ronaldo could not add to the four goals he scored in the group stages.
Kylian Mbappe, only 19 and one of the youngest players at the tournament, scored two goals in a five-minute span of the second half to lead France over Argentina 4-3 Saturday and into the World Cup quarterfinals.
It means Lionel Messi ends the World Cup with just one goal - and at 31 he may never again grace a competition that he has never truly lit up.
They are the product of "convictions, group cohesion, to know what we're playing for", Tabarez said. On the night, Uruguay were certainly a superior version of Portugal.
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Ultimately, Uruguay were able to tempt Portugal into taking shots from distance and then smother them, blocking eight of the 20 Portuguese efforts on goal. The Barcelona forward held the ball for a moment as Cavani powered into the area before whipping in a cross for his strike partner to head home.
Ronaldo nearly had a chance at goal on 20 minutes but a timely clearance by Gimenez six yards was enough to keep Ronaldo at bay.
Portugal, for whom West Ham United loanee Mario played 85 minutes, started brightly with Bernardo Silva heading over at the far post and Ronaldo firing straight at Fernando Muslera in the Uruguay goal.
"Cavani has to thank Suarez today, but his movement has always been brilliant, finishing not always great but, for the first, he improvises brilliantly", said Keown. I am happy, happy, happy.
Uruguay had not conceded in any of their six matches in 2018 but almost 10 hours of resistance came to an end courtesy of a simple set-piece move in the 55th minute.
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Ronaldo helped Portugal win its first major trophy two years ago at the European Championship.
With or without their star player, Uruguay will take on France in Nizhny Novgorod on July 6 in the Quarter Final game.
Ronaldo played a leadership role in that triumph and Portugal coach Fernando Santos said he hopes he will continue and help him with a new generation of players.
Ronaldo had a great start at the tournament in Russian Federation, scoring four goals in two matches, but he was held scoreless in the next two games as Portugal lost first place in its group and eventually was eliminated by Uruguay.
"It was a mistake from us that cost us the equaliser but luckily we found some space and the team stayed strong mentally", said Tabarez.
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