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Corinthians beat Chelsea to win the FIFA Club World Cup

December 16, 2012 By Gregory Sica
The Brazilian giants were crowned world champions for the second time thanks to a second half goal from Paolo Guerrero.
A headed goal from Peruvian striker Paolo Guerrero was the difference as Corinthians beat Chelsea 1-0 in the final of the Club World Cup at Yokohama Stadium in Japan on Sunday.

The Copa Libertadores champions dominated Chelsea for much of the encounter, especially in the second half, and were worthy title winners after a memorable display.

Chelsea, who beat Bayern Munich in the final of the UEFA Champions League to qualify for the competition, would have taken the lead in the 11th minute had Corinthians goalkeeper Cassio not made a brilliant save to deny a close-range effort from Gary Cahill.

Emerson, who scored twice in the Copa Libertadores final to overcome Boca Juniors, had a good opportunity to put Corinthians ahead in the 29th minute, but he blasted the ball over the crossbar when he had the goal at his mercy.

The last chance to score in the first half came from Chelsea, with a curling effort from Victor Moses being pushed out for a corner-kick by a stretching Cassio.

Corinthians, who won the first edition of the FIFA Club World Cup in the year 2000, completely dominated their European rivals in the second period with an organised passing game, and pushed forward down the flanks at every opportunity.

Midfielder Paulinho was particularly impressive, as he battled in the middle of the park and created goal-scoring opportunities for the attackers with his exceptional vision of the game and tremendous skill.

After much pressure, their much-deserved goal arrived in the 69th minute when a shot from Danilo deflected off a defender before Guerrero headed it into the back of the net to the agony of Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech.

From that instance a composed Corinthians controlled the flow of the match, while an increasingly desperate Chelsea pushed forward in numbers but without any clear ideas.

Chelsea were reduced to ten men in the 90th minute, when a frustrated Cahill brought Emerson down with a rough tackle.

Fernando Torres, who was without any doubt Chelsea's most dangerous player, found the back of the net in injury time but his goal was ruled out for an offside infringement.

Corinthians, who have an estimated fan base of 25 million spread around the world, celebrated their title triumph with great joy, while several members of the Chelsea squad walked off the field in tears.

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