FIFA World Cup Club - What is it?
By Andrew Cuff
Monday 24 Nov 2008 12:00:00
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The World Club Cup was formerly know as the Club World Championship and should be the most prestigious trophy in club football. The competition features the winners from the six World football confederations; these include European confederation (UEFA), South American confederation (CONMEBOL), Central American and Caribbean (CONCACAF), African (CAF), Asian (AFC) and Oceania (OFC); however since 2007 the winners from the Oceania Football Confederation have had to play a qualifying match against the Champion Club of the host country, Japan.

The first competition took place in 2000 but due to cancellations in early years this is only the 5th time this tournament is taking place and the South American Confederation winning the first three competitions are favourites to take the trophy again. Milan are reigning champions after winning the tournament after beating Boca Juniors 4 -2.

The teams taking part in this years competition are Manchester United and LDU Quito from Ecuador and both teams qualify straight for the semi-finals of the competition; Pachuca from Mexico, Gamba Osaka from Japan and Al-Ahly from Egypt all enter the competition in the quarter final stage and Waitakere United and Adelaide United both from Australia play the qualification round prior to the quarter finals. Adelaide United were runners up in the Asian League take the place of the hosts as Gamba Osaka qualified from the host country already.

Manchester United who kick off their campaign in the competition in the semi-finals will be taking on the winner of the quarter final stage which will consist of Gamba Osaka from Japan and host or one of the Australian teams. The competition which kicks off on the 11th of December will not feature Manchester United until the 18th of December and after that it will be a second match on the 21st of December as both the final and 3rd place play-off take place on the same day.

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Manchester United could be in for a big Christmas present with the winners taking home $5million, second place taking home $4million, third place taking home $2.5million and 4th place, which is the worst United could finish taking home $2million and with the dollar strengthening again it will be all the better for the English club to bring home top prize. The winners also get to add a badge of honour onto their kit and they may wear this until the commencement of the next competition.

All in all this competition is still a fairly new and developing competition but United and Ferguson have yet to take home honours in this competition will hope to put a full team forward and take home top spot and add another trophy into the trophy case. 

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