Vinicius Jr and Karim Benzema provided necessary actions against Al Hilal and gave Real Madrid its fifth Club World Cup title.
The Spanish Giant, Los Blancos has extended their historic campaign and clinched fifth World cup title by securing the final match against Al Hilal 5-3 to take the FIFA Club World Cup 2023 title. Despite lagging behind for most of the match, Al Hilal did not give up and showed no fluke against the La Liga Champion and performed the same intensity when they ousted brazilian side Flamengo in the semi-finals. Luciano Vietto flirted with hat-tricks, as he got help from Moussa Marega with one goal for the Asian Champions.
Real Madrid last won the tournament for three straight seasons in 2016, 2017, and 2018. They won their first title in 2014.
“Vinicius has been improving since last season just as the team has also grown. We won the Champions League and now the world title, and Vinicius has grown along the way,” praised by Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti. “We are thrilled with what he is doing, above all because he keeps getting better. He is much more decisive now and is making the difference in every match.”
On the other hand, the unexpected Benzema played in the finals and helped Los Blancos to win back their Club World Cup title after the Ballon D’Or winner missed the previous two games. The French International cued the opening minutes with an opener after he initiated great combinations with Valverde and a clearance for Vini Jr in order to beat the goalkeeper Abdullah Al-Mayouf. It was followed by Federico Valverde as he took the opportunity to break the poor clearance of the defender via between the legs and whizzed past Al-Mayouf to push an early double lead at 18th minute.
Moussa Marega scored at the 26th minute to cut the lead to a single point before half-time. Coming into the second half – for the first 14 minutes before Karim Benzema decided to score in the 54th minute to once again, double the lead. Valverde scored his second and final goal at the 58th and secured the victory over the European squad and denied Al Hilal to be the first Asian club to lift the World Cup trophy.
Despite that early loss before the match, Al Hilal did not step down nor give up and still provided two needed goals from Luciano Vietto, the former Everton striker as he scored in the 63rd minute and 79th minute of the match.
Another English Premier League club has won the title for the European side, Chelsea but were not able to defend their title after missing out the Champions League last season. FIFA plans to change the format of the Club world cup tournament from June 2025 and feature 32 teams and to be held traditionally, every four years.
Club World Cup Golden Ball Winner: Vinicius Junior
Adidas Silver Ball: Federico Valverde
Adidas Bronze Ball: Luciano Vietto
FIFA Fair Play Award: Real Madrid
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