Chelsea vs Al Hilal: The Blues Take On Asia’s Best Club Team for a Place in the Final of the Club World Cup

Chelsea vs Al Hilal: The Blues Take On Asia’s Best Club Team for a Place in the Final of the Club World Cup

Byron Pillay
updated at April 12, 2023 at 7:55 PM
  • Chelsea will be looking to book their place in the final of the FIFA Club World Cup when they take on Al Hilal
  • Al Hilal is considered the best Asian team of the last century and has won more than 50 domestic trophies
  • The losers of the game between Chelsea and Al Hilal will face Pitso Mosimane's Al Ahly for third place in the tournament

Chelsea FC is the current European champions and later today they hope to take one step closer to being called the World champions.

To do this, Chelsea with have to beat Saudi Arabia’s Al Hilal in the semi-finals of the FIFA Club World Cup. The winner of the clash will face Brazil’s Palmeiras in the final of the tournament.

Chelsea, Al Hilal, Asia, Club World Cup, FIFA, Soccer, Football, Sport
Chelsea and Al Hilal face off in the FIFA Club World Cup with both teams eyeing a place in the final. Image: Darren Walsh/ Matthew Ashton
Source: Getty Images

Palmeiras beat Pitso Mosimane’s Al Ahly 2-1 in the first semi-final to book their place in Saturday’s final.

Who are Chelsea’s opponents, Al Hilal SFC?

Al Hilal SFC was awarded the title of best Asian Club of the 20th century and are the current Asian Champions League winner. The team has won 50 domestic trophies and has won the Saudi Professional League a record 17 teams.

The team continues to achieve great success despite numerous management changes. Over the past 22 years, the team has had approximately 40 different coaches at the helm, Chelsea confirmed on their website.

The squad boasts numerous local and international talent, including two players who previously played in the English Premier League. Matheus Pereira and Odion Ighalo know Chelsea quite well from their playing days and will be looking to continue their fine form at the Club World Cup too.

Both players scored in their opening round win over Al Jazira which saw them earn a spot in the semis against Chelsea.

Chelsea look to bring back Club World Cup title

Chelsea go into their game against Al Hilal without manager Thomas Tuchel who tested positive for Covid19 before the team jetted off to the United Arab Emirates. Edouard Mendy also remains a doubt for the game as the Senegalese shot-stopper has just returned from the African Cup of Nations. Chelsea will assess how tired he is before deciding whether to rest him or not.

Chelsea is expected to make a few changes from the team that beat Plymouth over the weekend in the FA Cup.

Chelsea or Al Hilal could still face Pitso Mosimane’s Al Ahly

After losing to Palmeiras in the first semi-final, Al Ahly was relegated to the third/fourth playoff game. Pitso’s side could face Chelsea in the match if the Blues fail to get past the Saudi Arabian outfit, The South African reported. Football fans have been clamouring to see how Al Ahly would fare against the European champions.

Tuchel Recalls Highly Rated Defender for Club World Cup Semi-final Against Al-Hilal

Trevor Chalobah returns to the Chelsea squad for the first time since January as the Blues prepare for their FIFA Club World Cup semi-final fixture against Saudi-Arabian club Al-Hilal, Sports Brief reported.

The defender has not played for Chelsea since he picked up a hamstring injury in a 2-2 against Liverpool in a Premier League game. According to The Chelsea Chronicle, Antonio Rudiger and Thiago Silva are expected to start alongside the Chalobah in the heart of the Chelsea defence.

French defender, Ngolo Kante, Euros 2020 champion, Jorginho and Mateo Kovacic is projected to lead the Blues three-man midfield. Record club signing, Romelu Lukaku might sit out the semi-final fixture as pundits expect Tuchel to feature fast-paced attackers in Kai Havertz, Timo Werner and Mason Mount.

Byron Pillay photo
Byron Pillay
Byron Pillay is a sports writer and Head of the Department at Sports Brief (joined in 2022) with over 10 years of experience in community journalism and a degree in journalism from Caxton's Cadet School.
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