2018 Club World Cup

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Real Madrid win record-breaking Club World Cup

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Real Madrid are the 2018 FIFA Club World Cup champions, as they beat Al Ain 4-1 in Abu Dhabi on Saturday.

The victory means Real have been crowned the best club team on the planet in each of the last three years, and have won this competition in four of the last five years.

Santiago Solari’s men have become the first team in competition history to win the tournament four times and celebrated wildly at the final whistle at the Zayed Sports City Stadium.

Real were 1-0 up at half time through Luka Modric’s stunner, then added goals in the second half from Marco Llorente, Sergio Ramos and an own goal capped off the win.

UAE side Al Ain, who had pulled off a great run to reach the final, scored via Tsukasa Shiotani but Real were always playing in second gear.

Modric put Real ahead early on as his curling effort from the edge of the box flew into the top corner.

The Croatian midfielder certainly knows how to pop up in the big moments when his team needs him most.

After that opener Real took control of the game and almost scored a second. Dani Carvajal teed up Lucas Vazquez but his shot flew just wide of the far post.

In the second half Real pulled away as Llorente smashed home a wonderful volley from the edge of the box to make it 2-0 after 60 minutes.

And with just over 10 minutes to go the trophy was sealed with Ramos flicking home a wonderful header from Modric’s corner to make it 3-0.

His celebration said it all.

Shiotani grabbed a consolation for Al Ain late on as his superb looping header gave the home fans something to cheer, but Real eased to victory as they added a fourth.

Teenager Vinicius Junior ran in on goal and his shot was deflected into his own net by Yahia Nader to make it 4-1.

Real were crowned the best club team on the planet for the third-straight season as they continue to shatter records.

Watch Live: Real Madrid v. Al Ain, Club World Cup final

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Real Madrid play Al Ain in the 2018 Club World Cup final in Abu Dhabi on Saturday (Watch live, 11:30 a.m. ET live online and on Telemundo) with the Spanish giants aiming to win their third-straight title.

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Santiago Solari’s side swept past Kashima Antlers in the semifinal on Wednesday, with Gareth Bale‘s hat trick leading them to a 3-1 win. Real have won three of the last four Club World Cup titles and they would become the first team in tournament history to win four trophies.

As for local side Al Ain, the UAE champs will have the fans on their side in their home city of Abu Dhabi and Swedish striker Marcus Berg has led them past Esperance de Tunis and an upset of River Plate in the semifinal on penalty kicks.

Click on the link above to watch the final, as Real aim for glory.

Bale leads Real Madrid to Club World Cup final – Video

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For the third season running Real Madrid have reached the final of the FIFA Club World Cup.

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The reigning European champions have won the previous two tournaments (and three of the last four) and Gareth Bale scored an 11-minute hat trick to ease Real past the Kashima Antlers 3-1 on Wednesday in Abu Dhabi.

Real Madrid put aside their La Liga woes and were comfortable winners in the end, as Bale scored either side of half time and then sealed his hat trick with a splendid strike before the 60-minute mark. Kashima’s Shoma Doi grabbed a consolation late on as his strike was initially chalked off but VAR proved it was a legitimate goal.

They will play Abu Dhabi’s very own Al Ain in the final on Saturday at 11:30 a.m. ET, which you can watch by clicking on the link above, as a win would mean they become the first team in tournament history to win four titles. A victory in the final would mark the fourth time in the last five years Real have been crowned as the best club team on the planet.

Santiago Solari’s men piled on the pressure late in the first half after a slow start, as Bale scuffed an effort as he looked set to volley home with several Kashima defenders swarming around him.

Karim Benzema was causing plenty of problems in the final third, Toni Kroos had a shot from distance saved rather easily and then Sergio Ramos headed a free kick wide.

Right on half time Bale scored the opener for Real as he played a brilliant one-two with Marcelo and slotted home into the far corner off the post.

Early in the second half Bale cut the ball back and it found Benzema but his shot was cleared off the line by Shuto as Kashima battened down the hatches.

At the other end Daigo caused Luka Modric a few problems as he faced his own goal, but a foul was given against Kashima at the pivotal moment.

Soon after a poor back pass allowed Bale to sneak in and he tucked home his and Real’s second goal of the game.

And moments later Bale had his and Real’s third, as the Welshman sealed his hat trick with a stunning strike across goal and into the far corner.

The hat trick occurred in just 11 minutes either side of half time as Bale was subbed off after 60 minutes.

Solari’s men could have added more goals late on but a combination of poor finishing and resolute defending from Kashima meant Bale’s goals were enough.

Kashima then grabbed a late consolation as Doi’s tidy finish eventually counted after VAR intervened to stop it being incorrectly overturned.

But Bale stole the show as Real booked their place in Saturday’s Club World Cup final with minimum fuss as they aim to win their third-straight title.

WATCH LIVE: Kashima Antlers v. Real Madrid

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The second 2018 Club World Cup semifinal takes place Wednesday in Abu Dhabi, as Real Madrid face Japanese giants Kashima Antlers at 11:30 a.m. ET.

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Whoever prevails will play UAE side Al Ain in the final, as they stunned South American giants River Plate on penalty kicks on Tuesday.

Real have won the Club World Cup two times on the trot, with the reigning European champs heavily favored to take care of business once again despite all of their problems in the post Cristiano Ronaldo and Zinedine Zidane era.

Click on the link above to watch them face Kashima, who they beat in extra time in the final in 2016.

The final takes place at 11:30 a.m. ET on Saturday.

WATCH LIVE: River Plate v. Al Ain, Club World Cup semifinal

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River Plate face Al Ain in a 2018 FIFA World Club Cup semifinal in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday at 11:30 a.m. ET at the Hazza bin Zayed Stadium.

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The controversially, and recently crowned, South American champions are the favorites although Al Ain eased by Es Tunis in their quarterfinal clash on Saturday and will have the support of the locals in their hometown.

River’s players will be more than a little drained from the high emotions of beating Boca Juniors in the delayed Copa Libertadores final second leg which was finally played in Madrid last weekend.

Click on the link above to watch the game via Telemundo Deportes, with the game also available to watch on NBC Universo.

You can also watch Real Madrid play the Kashima Antlers on Wednesday at 11:30 a.m. ET in the other semifinal. Real have won the last three Club World Cups on the trot.

The final will take place on Saturday at 11:30 a.m. ET, which you can also watch on NBC Universo.