Real Madrid Win FIFA Club World Cup

Real Madrid are the 2014 FIFA Club World Cup champions after defeating San Lorenzo 2-0 in the final in Marrakech on Saturday.  The Uefa Champions League winners scored on either side of half-time thanks to goals from defender Sergio Ramos and winger Gareth Bale.  The win now brings Carlo Ancelotti’s side to 22 consecutive wins in all competitive matches.

Los Blancos head coach Ancelotti made one change from the side that defeated Cruz Azul 4-0 in the semi-final with Colombian James Rodriguez replacing Asier Illarramendi in midfield.  The European champions nearly scored in the first minute when Toni Kroos won the ball in midfield before setting up Cristiano Ronaldo on the left wing.  Ronaldo then crossed towards the onrushing Karim Benzema, who was unable to reach the cross.

In the fifth minute, a free-kick from Ronaldo deflected off the wall, bouncing straight into the arms of San Lorenzo goalkeeper Sebastian Torrico.  Benzema tested Terrico later when his right-footed shot from 20 metres was saved in the 28th minute.  Eight minutes later, Madrid went on a counter-attack with Benzema finding an onrushing Bale whose shot was saved by Torrico for a corner kick.  The breakthrough came when Kroos’s corner kick found the head of Sergio Ramos who leapt over Mario Yepes to create familiar scenes from the semi-final.

Real then took the momentum from Ramos’s goal to distance themselves from the Copa Libertadores holders.  A clever pass from Isco found Bale inside the box, and the Welshman’s left-footed shot slipped beneath Torrico and into the net.  San Lorenzo threatened Real Madrid goalkeeper Iker Casillas a couple of times with Enzo Kalinski providing the most dangerous chances, however, Casillas was able to deal effectively with San Lorenzo’s efforts to assure the Spanish giants the title in Marrakech.