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FIFA Club World Cup

  • December 18, 2011
  • • 5:30 AM
  • • Nissan Stadium, Yokohama
  • Referee: R. Irmatov
  • • Attendance: 68166

Club World Cup Final Preview: Santos - Barcelona

Club World Cup Final Preview: Santos - Barcelona

Getty Images previews the action as the Catalans face Muricy Ramalho's men in the CWC final, looking to secure yet another trophy for their cabinet



Danilo, Edu Dracena, Durval, Leo
Ganso, Arouca, Henrique, Elano
Neymar, Borges

Alves, Puyol, Pique, Abidal
Iniesta, Busquets, Xavi
Pedro, Messi, Fabregas

The Copa Libertadores champions will welcome back Leo after being left out of the semifinal due to worries over his fitness. This allows Durval to return to his favored center half position, which fans must hope rectifies the defensive frailties shown against Kashiwa Reysol.

Ganso and Elano will look to build attacks from the middle of the park while Arouca and Henrique will look to press Barcelona hard and cover the defensive line.

Guardiola has a number of injury worries ahead of Sunday's final. David Villa has flown back to Spain to undergo surgery on a broken tibia that he suffered in the semifinal victory over Al Sadd.

Despite a brace in the previous fixture, Adriano will likely make way for Dani Alves, and Xavi will return to the center of midfield, possibly at the expense of Thiago Alcantara. Alexis Sanchez is also a doubt so his place could be taken by Cesc Fabregas or possibly Isaac Cuenca.

Javier Mascherano also picked up a knock, and is likely to be replaced by the fully rested captain Carlos Puyol.

  • Santos qualified for the Club World Cup by defeating Penarol 2-1 over two legs in the 2011 Copa Libertadores final in June.

  • The Brazilian side won the competition twice in its previous format as the Intercontinental Cup. Its 1962 triumph made it the first team in South America to achieve a quadruple.
  • Brazil is the most successful nation in the competition, supplying three different winners since its inauguration.
  • Barcelona won the competition as recently as 2009 with an extra time goal from Lionel Messi earning victory over Estudiantes.
  • The Catalan side lost the last time it faced Brazilian opposition in the Club World Cup, bowing out to Internacional 0-1.
  • Barcelona full back Adriano is currently the competition's top scorer. His two goals against Al Sadd leave him two behind compatriot Denilson's record of four strikes in a tournament achieved in 2009.
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Last Five Matches

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Betting & Predictions

Reader's Predictions

Santos FC Sao Paulo SAN
Santos FC Sao Paulo Santos
FC Barcelona FCB
FC Barcelona Barcelona

Top 3 Predictions

Santos FC Sao Paulo SAN
1 - 3
FC Barcelona FCB
Santos FC Sao Paulo SAN
0 - 3
FC Barcelona FCB
Santos FC Sao Paulo SAN
2 - 1
FC Barcelona FCB