#FIFA Club World Cup

Rüdiger resolute as Chelsea win Club World Cup

FIFA, 14 Feb 2022


Over the course of the FIFA Club World Cup 2021, our Technical Study Group (TSG) are tasked with selecting the Man of the Match for every game. Here we take a closer look at their performances.

UEFA Champions League winners Chelsea were crowned champions after a hard-fought 2-1 victory over Copa Libertadores champions, Palmeiras in front of a vocal crowd of 32,871 at the Mohammed Bin Zayed stadium. Chelsea took a 54th minute lead when Romelu Lukau headed home a Callum Hudson-Odoi cross but Palmeiras equalised through a Raphael Veiga penalty to send the game to extra-time. With just three minutes of extra-time remaining, Kai Havertz stepped up and converted his spot-kick following a Palmeiras handball, to the absolute delight of the significant travelling Blues support.  

Chelsea centre-back, Antonio Rüdiger, was selected by our TSG as Man of the Match for his influence on nullifying Palmeiras attacking threats but also his contribution to Chelsea's attacking play. Defensively he was hugely influential, making nine clearances, four blocks, four interceptions. He also made two successful tackles and won the ball when taken on twice. In possession, he completed 107 distributions with an accuracy rate of 91%.  


Steve McClaren observed the game and commented, "Rüdiger was excellent in this match. With Palmeiras consistently trying to reach their forward players, Rony, Veiga and Dudu in wide areas, Rüdiger always had to be alert to defend the different challenges presented by the three players, who all attack in different ways. You could see this in the game and it was backed up in his numbers in the data. 

It was a composed performance from him, where he really demonstrated his physical strength, especially in the 1v1 duels. He was good on the ball as well. He had a lot of possession and his use of it was very intelligent."

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