At 31, his chances to win something with his nation are certainly running out and the almost desperate way he applies himself in every game suggests he is battling the passage of time itself.His three 'Man of the Match' performances are testament to his dedication to the cause.When Uruguay meet Germany in the 2010 FIFA World Cup's third place play-off game on Saturday, one player with little left to prove will be Diego Forlan, the star of the South American team's stunning campaign.
While his exploits in South Africa will have added to his growing status as one of the best attackers in the world, the experience of having superlatives hurled at him is not a new one for Diego Forlan. The striker has known as many bad times as good and as such is unlikely to allow the latest round of praise and attention go to his head.
From figure of fun to world class striker In the light of his recent successes in club football, it may be difficult to imagine Forlan as a figure of fun but before his career took off, the Uruguayan very nearly sunk without trace before it even began.
Tottenham Hotspur and even his old club Manchester United are rumored to be interested in bringing him back to England from Spain but Forlan has said that he is committed to Atletico Madrid.
Anyone witnessing Forlan's commitment at the World Cup will know that this means the Uruguayan star is going nowhere.
His other main rivals, five-goal stars Wesley Sneijder of the Netherlands and Spain's David Villa, meet in the final on Sunday.
It's unsurprising given the impact he has had in South Africa that suitors will soon come calling for his services.
While other more celebrated stars were wilting under the pressure in between bouts of complaining of tiredness after a long season, Forlan showed that even with 67 games under his belt he still had the will and desire to lead one of the unfancied teams at the tournament to heights rarely scaled since the days of Uruguay's 1950 World Cup win.
Playing off main striker Luis Suarez in his favored position between midfield and attack, Forlan has shown throughout the tournament that he values every moment he is given playing in the shirt of La Celeste.
One player in particular will step off the plane in Montevideo with his reputation dramatically enhanced: Diego Forlan.
Forlan is more than Uruguay's playmaker, stand-in captain and best player. It may be a matter for debate but it could be argued that it was Forlan alone who inspired Uruguay to performances at the World Cup that other small nations could only dream of.
Alves interjected at one point, seemingly taking the ball so he could give it to Brazil teammate Neymar.