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Nigel French/EMPICS Sport
Corinthians beat Chelsea to win in Yokohama
The Blues’ arduous two-game pursuit of Club World Cup glory has ended in failure.

CORINTHIANS BECAME ONLY the second team to win the Club World Cup twice after defeating Chelsea 1-0 in Sunday’s final in Yokohama.

In an even first half, which saw both sides have spells of dominance, the Londoners had the better of the chances with Cassio brilliantly denying both Gary Cahill and Victor Moses. There was a similar feel to the second half, with both teams mostly cancelling each other out.

However, Paolo Guerrero nodded home with 20 minutes left to secure the victory for the Brazilians, and Cassio again coming to Corinthians’ rescue late on – with Cahill receiving a red card and Fernando Torres having a goal disallowed in injury time.

The Premier League side went close to taking the lead, and to testing the goal-line technology, after 10 minutes. Juan Mata’s corner fell to Cahill who poked the ball at goal from close range, however Cassio reacted quickly to smother the ball close to the line.

Chelsea began to look slightly dominant in possession, but, with Corinthians placing men behind the ball to soak up the pressure, Benitez’s men struggled to create chances.

Guerrero started to cause problems as coach Tite’s side took a foothold. He nutmegged Cahill with ease to skip into the box, however fell to the ground under little, if any, contact.

Moments after a delightful diagonal ball from Eden Hazard nearly sent Moses in on goal, Guerrero then ghosted past Cahill and Luiz into the box once more, but saw his strike flash across goal.

The west Londoners then came back into the clash with two openings before the break. Firstly, Torres’ deft touch after Lampard’s pass created a good chance, but the finish was weak.

Then, Moses cut in from the right-hand-side of the penalty box to curl a strike towards the far corner, but Cassio tipped it wide at full stretch. Cassio’s fantastic display continued after the interval as he blocked Hazard’s effort in a one-on-one after 10 minutes.

Corinthians netted the breakthrough with just over 20 minutes remaining. Paulinho was allowed to run with the ball through the penalty box before shifting it to Danilo who cut inside to shoot.

The effort then deflected off Cahill into the air, leaving Petr Cech stranded on the floor and Guerrero with the simple task of heading past the three defenders on the line.

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Torres should have sent the game into extra-time, though, with five minutes left. The ball fell to the Spaniard after a wicked deflection leaving the forward with plenty of time to pick his spot but Cassio produced a fabulous stop.

There was yet more late drama as Cahill was red carded for a coming together with Emerson in the 90th minute, before Torres had a header disallowed for offside and Mata hit the post in injury time.

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