The English team claimed their first-ever Club World Cup title, while Verdao return with their head held high.
Last weekend, a new world champion was crowned. Palmeiras fans had hoped to win the title for the first time, but Chelsea ended the wait with a 2-1 triumph in an extra-time thriller.
Numerous players, including Dudu and Raphael Veiga, benefitted from FIFA’s competition, scoring goals and making key contributions to Palmeiras’ campaign. On the other hand, veteran defender Thiago Silva has been outstanding for Chelsea this season, despite gifting a penalty in the final.
After the Club World Cup ends, it’s time to highlight the tournament’s significant moments and present a wrap-up!
Chelsea on top of the world for the first time
While the Club World Cup is not the most important competition for European teams, this was Chelsea’s first triumph. That was the only tournament the Blues have missed since Roman Abramovich purchased the club in 2003.
Corinthians defeated the team in 2012. In a contest that Corinthians (and Palmeiras) will remember fondly, Chelsea’s tale now has a different ending.
The conquest was not as straightforward as it seems. In the semifinal, the Blues claimed a hard-fought 1 to 0 triumph against Al Hilal. Palmeiras battled valiantly, but Kai Havertz’s extra-time penalty clinched the win. Thus, German coach Thomas Tuchel permanently inscribes his name into the club’s history.
Palmeiras sells expensive, but Brazilian fasting is still alive
Following their fourth-place finish last year, Palmeiras turned the tables and had a fantastic experience in Abu Dhabi. In the semifinals, they comfortably overcame Al Ahly, aided by strong performances from Raphael Veiga and Dudu.
Thus, Abel Ferreira’s team did not dominate, but stayed competitive, posed a danger to the opponent, and forced overtime. Luan’s tragedy, on the other hand, lost him the title of world’s dream. Verdao, despite everything, leaves with a straight face.
Chelsea’s triumph, on the other side, extended the European teams’ winning run in the Club World Cup. Since 2013, all champions have been continental. By the way, England were the last team to lose the crown.
During this time period, many Brazilian teams excelled in the competition. Along with Palmeiras, Flamengo (2019) and Grêmio (2017) were beaten by the smallest of margins — by Liverpool and Real Madrid, respectively. Brazilian football has a lesser level of competition, yet it manages to maintain a balance of activities.
Thiago Silva and Dudu are individual highlights
Thiago Silva was voted the Golden Ball at the tournament’s conclusion. Although the Brazilian defender caused the penalty converted by Raphael Veiga, he has been a key player in Chelsea’s defensive scheme since his arrival at the club.
At 37, he is enjoying one of the finest periods of his career and is very certain to be included in Tite’s World Cup team in Qatar. Since 2008, the footballer has achieved fame in Europe by winning trophies with the Blues.
Dudu was the standout performer for Palmeiras, winning the Silver Ball. The striker scored and assisted in the semi-final and, despite a lackluster performance in the final, reclaimed his title as “the team’s star.”
Raphael Veiga and Danilo are two further players that end the World Cup with a high rating. The midfielder overcame doubts to establish himself as a regular starter and standout for Palmeiras. The steering wheel is a revelation in Brazilian football and is unlikely to remain for an extended period in the nation. Soon, he should be able to play for a reputable European club.
Will there be Club World Cup in 2022?
The present format of the Club World Cup, which has been in existence since 2005, is out of date. FIFA aims to stage a “Super Mundial” with 24 teams every four years (eight European and six South American sides). The objective is to motivate European clubs and thereby boost the profitability of the tournament.
Theoretically, this proposal would be implemented in 2021, however the competition would still follow the previous regulation. In other words, it is hard to foresee whether the Libertadores champion would have this chance at the end of 2022. The game’s governing body’s aspirations collide with the European calendar, which places a premium on the Champions League and national team events.
The FIFA calendar indicates that the World Cup will not be hosted in 2022. Additionally, as is usual for the game, the World Cup will be contested in December. As a consequence, the next edition may not occur until 2025, the year of the Confederations Cup. A bucket of cold water is provided for Brazilian teams.