Manchester City win the Club World Cup with 4-0 win over Fluminese

Manchester City have won their first-ever Club World Cup trophy after defeating Brazilian side Fluminese in the final of the competition.

Pep Guardiola’s side entered the competition at the semi-final stage as the reigning European champions and after despatching Urawa Reds in a routine 3-0 victory, the only side standing in their way were the Copa Libertadores winners.

Legendary defender Marcelo was the most notable name in the opposition’s line-up, while Andre – a man heavily linked with a move to the Premier League – started in midfield. It was always going to be an uphill battle for Diniz’s team as City asserted their authority early on and didn’t look back.

While the Brazilian outfit did show up and play their typical game which included inviting pressure by playing the ball around the back before looking to spring forward with short and quick passes, the English champions proved to have a slight physical advantage. Add this to the speed of thought the Man City players have, and it was always going to be a long night for Fluminese. Taking multiple risks in possession, they did give a good account of themselves against the odds.

Julian Alvarez inspires Man City to victory

The Argentine opened the scoring in the first minute

It didn’t take long for Guardiola’s men to assert their authority on the encounter as a Nathan Ake shot bounced back off the woodwork for Julian Alvarez to tap home inside the opening 40 seconds of the game.

It was a bitter pill for Marcelo and co to swallow, but this blow didn’t discourage the team from Brazil from playing their game confidently. In fact, they thought there was going to be a chance to pull the game level as the referee pointed to the spot for a penalty kick, only for the linesman’s flag to deny Fluminese the opportunity.

A huge slice of misfortune struck as Phil Foden picked the ball up on the left-hand side of the penalty area. The Englishman went to flash the ball across the box, and it was the boot of Nino – the Fluminese defender – that diverted the ball into his own net to give City a 2-0 advantage.

The second half followed a similar pattern of the English club dominating possession of the ball, with Fluminese having fleeting moments of opportunity on the counter-attack. Foden got on the end of a cross by Alvarez to finish off a flowing City attack and make it 3-0.

The young Argentinian then added the cherry on the top of the cake with a low right-footed drive into the bottom corner to seal the 4-0 rout. This put the result beyond all doubt and while the Citizens were successful on the night, there could potentially be some bad news along with the good.

Rodri suffers injury in Man City success

The Spaniard looked to be in a lot of discomfort

Some strong challenges were being put in during the competitive game and this resulted in cause for concern for Guardiola. Holding midfielder Rodri – who is a key part of the City team – was forced off due to a knee injury in the second half of the match. This came after a firm tackle was put in on the Spaniard. He looked to try and play on, but was ultimately withdrawn moments later.

The Man City boss will be sweating over the outcome of Rodri’s injury as the club will look to claw their way back into the Premier League title race upon their return to England. All three of City’s league losses in the 2023/24 season to date came when the midfielder was missing from action.

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