Desh Duniya Samachar

The European champion has maintained an undefeated record against the Asian champion in the Club World Cup, and this trend continued in Jeddah as Manchester City secured a comfortable 3-0 victory over Urawa Red Diamonds in the semi-finals on Tuesday. The win puts Manchester City just one game away from clinching their fifth title in 2023.

In a serene evening in Jeddah, City struggled to break the deadlock until first-half stoppage time when a fortunate own goal by Marius Hoibraten opened the scoring. The second half saw Mateo Kovačić and Bernardo Silva finding the net within a seven-minute span against the Japanese team.

With this victory, Manchester City is now the favorite to win the final against Fluminense of Brazil on Friday. Pep Guardiola, the manager of Manchester City, highlighted the importance of this title, stating, “It’s the only title that the club don’t have.”

Despite facing challenges in the Premier League, where they have won only one of their last six games, Manchester City has found success in international competitions. This Club World Cup triumph follows a flawless six-win streak in the Champions League group stage. The club had already secured the UEFA Super Cup title in August, adding to their trophy collection from the previous season, which included the Champions League, Premier League, and English FA Cup.

The first goal for City came with some assistance when Hoibraten inadvertently directed a pass into the goalmouth by Matheus Nunes. City, without Erling Haaland and Julián Álvarez, managed to extend their lead in the second half through Kovačić and Bernardo Silva.

Guardiola opted for a cautious approach, resting De Bruyne and not risking him despite his recent return to training after a hamstring injury. The crowd, though not at full capacity, witnessed Urawa fans providing spirited support. The match showcased the evident gap in quality, with City dominating the proceedings.

Looking ahead to the final, Guardiola outlined a simple plan for his players in Jeddah, emphasizing the importance of rest. The match on Friday will feature another Europe vs South America final, continuing the tradition in this competition. Urawa will also be part of the 32-team lineup when FIFA relaunches the Club World Cup in June 2025 in the United States.

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