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18 December 2011
• Nissan Stadium, Yokohama
Referee: R. Irmatov
• Attendance: 68166
L. Messi 17', 82'
Thank you for joining Goal.com for our live coverage as Barca are crowned world champions. My name is Tom Webber and it has been a pleasure. Remember to stick with Goal.com for all the post-match news and analysis, including match report and ratings. Have a great day!
Barca never looked like being beaten here and are rightly crowned champions of the world. Their football is mesmeric and are without doubt one of the best teams to have ever played the game.
Barca outplayed Santos today who got it all wrong. They absolutely dominated possession giving Neymar and Ganso barely any chance to get involved in the game.
IT'S OVER! BARCELONA ARE CLUB WORLD CUP CHAMPIONS!
We're in to stoppage time now, only one additional minute.
Barca get another two chances to snatch a goal. Messi has a shot blocked on the edge of the area before Alves tries to send an ambitious lob over Rafael but he puts it well over the bar.
Such a shame that it has not been the two-sided spectacle many hoped for. Santos have been totally outclassed and tactically got it all wrong today. Hopefully they do not concede another and go down in history to the biggest loss in a Club World Cup game.
Messi has been fantastic today and showed why he is favourite to win the Ballon d'Or this year. Santos get a chance from the corner but it's headed behind.
Andreu Fontàs Prat
Assist Daniel Alves
Goal Lionel Messi
Santos win the ball back and manage to string a few passes together before switching the play. Unfortunately it goes back to Rafael and it's given away!
OFF THE POST!! Pedro gets involved straight away. His cut-back for Alves is met with a thunderous attempt that rebounds of Rafael's near post and away. The second time they've hit the woodwork today!
Leo clips a ball into the box but it just wont fall for a Santos player. It goes back out and Elano tries to find Borges but they aren't on the same wavelength and the pass rolls to Valdes.
Yellow Card Edu Dracena
Neymar and Ganso combine well on the edge of the box but the number 10 just can't find the space for a shot. Messi drives it up the other end and is too fast for Edu Dracena who brings him down.
Yellow Card Ganso
Santos once again saved by the offside flag and it was marginal. Fortunately for Peixe, Alves wasn't offered the chance to finish off a terrific ball from Messi.
Yellow Card Javier Mascherano
A loose pass from Xavi causes Mascherano to go in for a tackle on Borges. It's reckless and he gets a booking.
Barca have cooled it a bit this half. They know the game is beyond doubt and are playing at a canter. It's almost another but Messi is adjudged to be offside.
Good work from the veteran full back Leo as he breaks out from his left back possession. He carries the ball up into the opposing half but his ball to Neymar is a bit wayward and once again possession is foregone.
Elano pings a terrific pass across the field which is picked up by Neymar. He drives to the byeline and does well to get a ball into the box. Ganso controls it but he is swarmed upon by the Barca defence and loses possession.
Everything is very rushed from Santos. They are nowhere near as comfortable on the ball as their opponents. Having said that, they will need to move the ball up the field quickly in order find a goal.
Neymar would usually tuck that chance away. Clearly the pressure has proved to be a bit too much for the young striker.
NEYMAR MISSES HIS CHANCE!! A great lofted ball from Ganso puts Neymar though on goal. He dithers on the ball and as Valdes rushes out to close the space he looks to slip it past him. It lacked conviction and the keeper made the save with his legs.
Another chance for Barca goes begging. This time it's Iniesta on the end of a series of tight passes. He unleashes a snapshot but it spins wide of the near post.
A good quick break from Santos as they look to stretch Barca at the back. Neymar plays a pass to Borges but his first touch lets it get away from him and he shoots straight at Valdes.
GOOD SAVE FROM RAFAEL!! Santos' defence seem hypnotised as they watch the ball being passed all over the pitch. Messi gets a one-on-one with Rafael but the keeper stays big and smothers the shot.
It could have been four there. Messi goes on another coruscating run from deep. He slips a ball to Thiago who's cross reaches Alves but the Brazilian's header is awful and he fails to hit the target.
Santos have shown a bit more attacking intent and urgency this half. Barca are now slowing down the play to reduce the momentum.
Thanks for your tweets. @mohdabrar261 has this to say, "Barca is a football standard that proves to be too hot for santos to handle". It is true that Santos have never come up against a team like this in South America. It's a huge difference in football.
Finally a chance for Santos. A great long ball from Ganso finds Borges who beats Abidal for pace and whips in a great ball. Neymar gets up but is too far under the ball and heads the chance over the top.
AWFUL START!! Messi and Fabregas combining again and just pulling apart the shocking defence. Messi receives the ball from the ex-Arsenal man but his shot just dribbles wide.
We're underway in the second half. Can Santos salvage anything from this game, even if it's just a bit of dignity?
Neymar has not had a chance to get anywhere near involved in this game as he would like. Will we see him dropping deep a bit more to try and kick-start the play? Will Ganso wake up and do more than play one good pass as he did in the first? Second half is a few minutes away! Keep the tweets coming @thwebber.
Another tweet from @iazhar03 "one thing why Messi is the greatest of all time is the fact that he always raises the bar at the big games like this...!!!". So true, he has been integral today, without a doubt the best player in the world.
This from @AlesNovotny. "I wouldnt pick up just one player. Barcelona as a whole has been brilliant. Difference between brazil and europe is enormous." I don't think the Santos defence have been able to pick anyone up!
What a half for Barca! Can Santos find a way back into this game? Who has been Barca's best player? Drop me a tweet and let me know your thoughts, @thwebber. I'll put the best ones up during half time.
It's half time in Japan in a half that Barcelona have dominated. Peixe have failed to recover after starting with a poor formation choice. They have been picked apart with ease in what is a disappointing display for fans of South American football.
Assist Lionel Messi
Goal Cesc Fàbregas
GOOOOOOOAAAAAAALLLLL!!! BARCA GET A THIRD!! Messi was played in superbly by Alves, he could have gone down for a penalty but stayed on his feet. He backheeled it to Alves who put a ball into the box. It was clawed at by Rafael and after he saved the original header, Fabregas tucked the ball into a virtually open goal.
Santos are allowing Barca so much space it is ridiculous. You need to be prepared to face this team and changing formation is not what you want to do.
That's the first time we have seen Neymar drop deep to pick up the ball as he did against Kashiwa Reysol in the semi-final. He turns well but his pass goes straight back to Barca. Credit to him he is trying to lead by example, chasing every ball.
Yellow Card Piqué
He dinks a ball into the box but Valdes comes out and punches it clear.
A set-piece opportunity for Santos here as Pique manhandles Neymar. Surely too far for Elano to have a crack. It's close to the half way line.
To have a chance of winning this Santos need to get hold of the ball and grab a goal before the break. If they don't then it could well be an absolute rout for the Catalan club.
A break in play here as Borges and Puyol receive treatment after clashing heads.
Barca are just slowing the game down a bit now, not allowing Elano to make an attacking influence on the game. They are slowly creeping up the field with delightful short passes but Fabregas is offside this time around.
Ramalho clearly knows he has got it wrong. He oddly pulls off Danilo for Elano. Durval will likely move to full back as he did against Kashiwa Reysol and Elano will join the midfield in a 4-4-2 shape.
FABREGAS HITS THE POST!!! They really have got it all wrong. Five at the back isn't working for Santos. A simple ball over the top is latched onto by Fabregas in the area. He takes a touch and shoots with his right and it rattles the woodwork. A real let-off for Muricy Ramalho's side.
Henrique steps up the tempo for the Brazilians, providing a quick ball to Ganso who turns and picks out Borges with a fantastic through-ball. The Brasileiro top scorer just can't find the right angle from out wide and Valdes gets down and holds the ball.
Another give-and-go sets Messi through on goal. They are cutting Santos apart with the most simplistic play. Fortunately for Peixe Bruno Rodrigo gets back before the game is put to bed.
Assist Daniel Alves
GOOOOOAAAAAALLLLLL!! 2-0!! Alves breaking down the right again and Leo just isn't tight enough to him, allowing him to pick out Xavi. His first touch tees up the shot and he drills it in low past Rafael.
The Copa Libertadores champions just can't get a hold of the ball. Barca are popping it about superbly.
Santos are looking a bit stretched now. Barca taking the momentum from the goal but they lack the pace to defend as high as they are. 74% ball possession thus far for the European champions.
Absolutely fantastic control from Xavi in the build up to the goal. Stretching his leg out behind him to pick the ball out the sky before playing a first-time ball in to Messi. Exquisite.
Goal Lionel Messi
IT'S IN!!! MESSI SCORES FROM NOWHERE!! A great piece of intricate play. Xavi controlls the ball superbly before slicing the defence apart with a great ball to Messi. The Argentine stays cool to lift the ball over Rafael and Bruno Rodrigo almost keeps it out but just did not get enough on it.
Neymar rolls the ball back to improve the angle of the shot for Ganso but he pulls it too much and it goes wide of the near post. Disappointing effort.
Borges shields the ball from Pique well to earn a free kick on the edge of the box. Unfortunately for Peixe, Elano is not on the pitch!
GREAT SAVE!! Messi carries the ball from close to his own half, skipping past Henrique far too easily. He moves the ball onto his left and bends a shot at goal but Rafael saves. He only parries it as far as Thiago but his effort fails to trouble the young Brazilian keeper.
Santos are defending well here. Danilo puts a good challenge on Iniesta but follows him inside allowing Fabregas to exploit the space he has vacated. He bursts for the line but his ball into the box is not good enough.
Alves cuts a ball back to Fabregas on the edge of the area but he looks to play a pass into the 6-yard box rather than shooting! What is he thinking!?
Another one-two on the edge of the area sees another Barca player fall to the floor but again the referee gives nothing.
Barca take the ball straight up the other end and Thiago plays a neat one-two with Messi and is brought down in the area before reaching the return pass. The referee sees nothing wrong and play continues.
Ganso is given time on the ball and looks to break forward. He passes the ball to Neymar who opts to cut onto his left foot rather than supply a ball to the overlapping Borges. He is closed down by Pique before he can get a shot off. Visions of grandeur from the young Brazilian there possibly.
Santos look to mount their first attack with the star of the previous game Danilo. He looks for a give-and-go with Borges but the striker's return pass is too long and goes well out of play. This will be Danilo's last game for Santos before moving to Porto.
Alves sends a ball into the box from the right which is headed away by Bruno Rodrigo. Unusual to see a high ball into the box but clearly the congested middle is forcing Barcelona to look out wide for space.
Barcelona have already settled down and are enjoying possession, spraying the ball about well. Santos are packing the middle in front of the box to reduce space for the penetrating pass.
Messi picked up the ball in the Santos half after Leo's hospital ball. He drives at goal but can't beat Arouca who gets back to help his defence and the danger is cleared.
We're underway in Japan!
The Catalan club showed their support for team-mate David Villa following his length lay-off from breaking his tibia in the previous game. They came to the field wearing shirts in support of their Spanish international.
Barcelona have made five changes from the semi-final win over Al Sadd. We are set for a fascinating encounter with two of the greatest players in the world at the moment taking to the pitch. Will Neymar live up to the hype or will he be overshadowed by Messi?
Will Muricy Ramalho's formation change ahead of the game tonight lead them to victory or prove to be a blunder. Leo and Danilo will provide plenty of attacking momentum but will his side play as a cohesive unit in the new formation? Will Barca exploit this? Drop me a tweet and let me know your thoughts, @thwebber.
This is the game that Peixe fans have been looking forward to since lifting the Copa Libertadores in June. This competition has a much greater hold over South American teams than the Europeans. Their dream game is just moments away.
Kick off is roughly 5 minutes away. Who will be the star tonight? After a lackluster performance in the semi-final Messi still needs to make his mark on the tournament. Santos coach Muricy Ramalho has tipped Neymar to produce something spectacular regardless of the result.
A number of rested players come in for the final for Barcelona. Fabregas replaces the injured Villa in the attacking line. (4-3-3): Valdes; Alves, Pique, Puyol, Abidal; Xavi, Busquets, Thiago; Iniesta, Messi, Fabregas.
Here is the team news, starting with Santos. Elano is dropped to give more defensive stability to the side. (3-5-2): Rafael; Edu Dracena, Durval, Bruno Rodrigo; Danilo, Arouca, Ganso, Henrique, Leo; Neymar, Borges.
Hello and welcome to Goal.com's LIVE text commentary of the 2011 Club World Cup Final between Santos and Barcelona. I'm Tom Webber and I will be guiding you through the action tonight as the Brazilians seek to overthrow the mighty European champions and claim the title.
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