Real Madrid has once again made history by becoming the Club World Cup champions for the fifth time. The Spanish giants faced Saudi Arabia’s Al Hilal in the final and secured a thrilling 5-3 victory in Rabat.
Vinicius Junior and Federico Valverde both shone, scoring two goals each to secure Madrid’s win.
The game started off with a strong showing from Real Madrid, with Vinicius Junior opening the scoring in the 13th minute, followed by a deflected shot from Valverde in the 18th minute.
However, Al Hilal’s Mali striker, Moussa Marega, quickly responded with a goal in the 26th minute, keeping the Saudi team in the game until halftime.
In the second half, Real Madrid came out determined to seal the win.
They were successful in doing so with a goal from Karim Benzema, assisted by a fantastic cross from Vinicius Junior, and a well-executed one-two between Valverde and Dani Carvajal, which resulted in Valverde’s second goal.
Despite Al Hilal’s continued efforts, including two impressive finishes from Luciano Vietto, Real Madrid held on to secure their fifth Club World Cup title, making them the most successful team in the competition’s history.
This victory marks Real Madrid’s fourth trophy in the past year, following their wins in the La Liga, Champions League, and UEFA Super Cup.
Their focus now shifts to the league, where they will face Elche, and the two-legged tie against Liverpool in the UCL, with the first match scheduled for 21st February at Anfield.
European teams have now won the past 10 editions of the Club World Cup, with Real Madrid having a combined total of eight global titles, including three Intercontinental Cup trophies.
Despite the dominant performance, the game was by no means easy for Real Madrid.
Al Hilal got a few opportunities on the counter, with Marega and Vietto causing problems for Real Madrid’s defense.
The team had 60% possession and 11 shots on target, but the defense was exposed at times.
Last-minute inclusions Eder Militao, Marco Asensio, and Benzema all made their presence felt in the final.
Despite Carvajal having a high temperature the day before the match and Nacho having to make a quick trip back to Rabat to see the birth of his daughter in Madrid, Real Madrid’s squad came together to secure the victory.
“We are very happy. For the eighth time Real Madrid is World Champion,” said manager Carlo Ancelotti.
“We made a good game, with a lot of quality up front. Vinicius, Benzema, Valverde… they have done very well. They showed skills and quality. It was great.”
Toni Kroos shared in the excitement, saying, “We remember how we suffered in last year’s Champions League and we deserve to be here.”
“Then you play against opponents who think it’s the game of their life.”
Madrid’s president, Perez, looked to the future, saying, “Everything we win is the starting point for what’s next.”
The next most successful teams in the Club World Cup and its predecessor, the Intercontinental Cup, are AC Milan and Bayern Munich with four titles each.
Real Madrid’s continued success solidifies their place as one of the greatest football teams in history.