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Chelsea Face Corinthians in Club World Cup Final


New Chelsea manager Rafa Benitez may be facing an enormous amount of hostility from the Stamford Bridge faithful, but the Spanish interim boss of the West London club is just 90 minutes away from the first trophy of his tenure.

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This Sunday he will lead his team out in the final of the FIFA Club World Cup in Yokohama to face South American champions Corinthians, and he will be hoping that a win in the competition he won with Inter Milan in 2010 will go some way to appeasing the Chelsea boo-boys.

Europe has provided the winners of this tournament for the past five seasons, however the Champions' League winners will face a far sterner test than they did against Monterrey in the semi-final. Chelsea ran out 3-1 winners in that game against a side that looked a long way away from the English team in terms of quality, but Corinthians have a formidable back-four that will not be breached so easily, and their pedigree is demonstrated by the fact that they are the first team since Boca Juniors in 1978 to win the Copa Libertadores undefeated.

Marshalled by captain Alessandro, they kept a clean sheet against Egyptian side Al-Ahly in the semi-final, and Mata & co. will have to perform at their best to claim the trophy and put their Champions' League disappointment from last week behind them.

There are no fresh injury concerns for either manager, and Corinthians' head coach Tite is likely to start the same team that defeated Al-Ahly, however Chelsea manager Benitez does have some decisions to make in certain positions.

David Luiz looked good in the centre of midfield, while Torres also looked in better form, however Benitez could opt for the veteran Frank Lampard or the powerful Victor Moses for this game.

Regardless of the result this weekend it is unlikely that Rafa Benitez will find his way into the Chelsea fans' hearts any time soon, however defeat will surely pile more pressure on a manager who can ill afford the additional weight on his shoulders.

The FIFA Club World Cup final is showing live on BBC2 and the iPlayer this Sunday at 10:30 a.m. GMT, so if you're a UK resident call the UK Proxy Server team on 0131 608 0009 to find out how you can watch online securely with a UK VPN server.


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