The 12th FIFA Club World Cup ended on Sunday in Yokohama with a meeting between the European champions FC Barcelona and the South American champions River Plate.
In a thrilling match between two of world football’s most iconic clubs, the team from Spain ran out 3-0 winners to be crowned champions of the world. This year’s tournament took place between 10 and 20 December in Osaka and Yokohama and is considered to have been an unqualified success.
“We were delighted to welcome the FIFA Club World Cup back to Japan after an absence of three years,” said Daini Kuniya, President of the Japan Football Association (JFA). ”After another marvellous tournament this year, we’re already looking forward to hosting next year’s event.
“Every game provided excitement and showcased the footballing characteristics of each of the continents. Those who attended the games were absorbed by some splendid performances.
“On a personal note, I was pleased to see Guangzhou Evergrande and Sanfrecce Hiroshima reach the semi-finals, showing the world that Asian football can compete at the highest level. However, I’d like to express my gratitude and respect to all of the participating clubs who ensured that Japan 2015 was a truly great tournament."
Markus Kattner, FIFA Acting Secretary General, echoed the JFA President’s comments and also paid tribute to the host country for their excellent organisation.
“The FIFA Club World Cup has once again proven to be a wonderful tournament, hosted by a wonderful country. From our first meeting for Japan 2015 to the last, the support we have received from the LOC has been absolutely wonderful.
“Plus, for the first time this year, Alibaba E-Auto joined us as our Presenting Partner and they have provided a tremendous boost to world football’s most prestigious club competition. My thanks must also go to all the fans who purchased tickets for the matches at Osaka and Yokohama and who travelled in good numbers from all over the world. They ensured that this truly international competition had a truly international audience.
“On that note, I’m delighted that a capacity crowd witnessed a keenly-contested final between Barcelona, the champions of Europe and River Plate, the champions of South America. I’m sure that everyone agrees that Barcelona were worthy winners. Congratulations to them and to all the teams involved for providing us with some memorable matches.”