Real Madrid eye Club World Cup retention to cap trophy-laden year

Al Jazira are appearing at the tournament as champions of the host nation the United Arab Emirates, and reached the last four by edging out Auckland City of New Zealand 1-0 and then defeating the Asian champions Urawa Red Diamonds by the same score-line at the weekend.

With the strike, Ronaldo became the all-time best scorer in the Club World Cup with six goals.

Cristiano Ronaldo equalised shortly afterwards and substitute Bale scored moments after his introduction with nine minutes left to set up a final clash with Brazilians Gremio on Saturday.

However, if the Spanish giants do find themselves on the losing side, it would be one of their recent falterings, in what has been a haphazard last few months for Zinedine Zidane's side, who are fourth in La Liga, trailing leaders Barcelona by eight points in the standings.

Southampton 1 Arsenal 1
The Gunners put in yet another languid performance, as a Per Mertesacker mistake gifted Charlie Austin a goal in the 3rd minute. The veteran manager wasn't happy at all after Arsenal's disappointing 1-1 draw with Southampton at St Mary's this afternoon .

Real Madrid avoided humiliation against Al Jazira as Gareth Bale's late victor earned them a 2-1 victory and a place in the final of the FIFA Club World Cup. "It's obviously a pleasure to play it because you can only do it if you've won the Champions League".

"It is not going to be easy for us".

Real are sure to face an even sterner test from Gremio, although the Brazilians also had to battle their way through their semi-final, overcoming Mexicans Pachuca 1-0 after extra-time. Words can not express how happy we are as fans to see our team play Real Madrid.

But it was Gareth Bale who played the part of the hero on the night.

  • Regina Holmes