2012 FIFA Club World Cup: News & Analysis [R]

Discussion in 'FIFA and Tournaments' started by SwissGCZ, Dec 21, 2011.

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  1. SwissGCZ

    SwissGCZ Moderator Staff Member

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    Who will make it to Japan this year?

    [​IMG]

    Tournament Winners & Statistics:

    Intercontinental Cup

    1960 Real Madrid (ESP)
    1961 Peñarol (URU)
    1962 Santos (BRA)
    1963 Santos (BRA)
    1964 Inter Milan (ITA)
    1965 Inter Milan (ITA)
    1966 Peñarol (URU)
    1967 Racing Club (ARG)
    1968 Estudiantes (ARG)
    1969 AC Milan (ITA)
    1970 Feyenoord (NED)
    1971 Nacional (URU)
    1972 Ajax Amsterdam (NED)
    1973 Independiente (ARG)
    1974 Atlético Madrid (ESP)
    1975 No competition
    1976 Bayern Munich (GER)
    1977 Boca Juniors (ARG)
    1978 No competition
    1979 Olimpia (PAR)

    Toyota Cup

    1980 Nacional (URU)
    1981 Flamengo (BRA)
    1982 Peñarol (URU)
    1983 Grêmio (BRA)
    1984 Independiente (ARG)
    1985 Juventus (ITA)
    1986 River Plate (ARG)
    1987 FC Porto (POR)
    1988 Nacional (URU)
    1989 AC Milan (ITA)
    1990 AC Milan (ITA)
    1991 Red Star Belgrade (SER)
    1992 São Paulo (BRA)
    1993 São Paulo (BRA)
    1994 Vélez Sarsfield (ARG)
    1995 Ajax Amsterdam (NED)
    1996 Juventus (ITA)
    1997 Borussia Dortmund (GER)
    1998 Real Madrid (ESP)
    1999 Manchester United (ENG)
    2000 Boca Juniors (ARG)
    2001 Bayern Munich (GER)
    2002 Real Madrid (ESP)
    2003 Boca Juniors (ARG)
    2004 FC Porto (POR)

    Club World Cup

    2000 Corinthians (BRA)
    2005 São Paulo (BRA)
    2006 Internacional (BRA)
    2007 AC Milan (ITA)
    2008 Manchester United (ENG)
    2009 FC Barcelona (ESP)
    2010 Inter Milan (ITA)
    2011 FC Barcelona (ESP)
    2012 ???

    Clubs with Multiple Titles

    4 - AC Milan (ITA)
    3 - Boca Juniors (ARG)
    3 - Inter Milan (ITA)
    3 - Nacional (URU)
    3 - Peñarol (URU)
    3 - Real Madrid (ESP)
    3 - São Paulo (BRA)
    2 - Ajax Amsterdam (NED)
    2 - Bayern Munich (GER)
    2 - FC Barcelona (ESP)
    2 - FC Porto (POR)
    2 - Independiente (ARG)
    2 - Juventus (ITA)
    2 - Manchester United (ENG)
    2 - Santos (BRA)

    Titles by Association

    9 - Argentina
    9 - Brazil
    9 - Italy
    6 - Spain
    6 - Uruguay
    3 - Germany
    3 - Netherlands
    2 - England
    2 - Portugal
    1 - Paraguay
    1 - Serbia

    Titles by Confederation

    26 - UEFA
    25 - CONMEBOL

    Moderator's Note:
    We will try to focus on the six continental competitions and the occasional CWC news bit from FIFA. Distracting posts will be deleted/moved if necessary.


  2. SwissGCZ

    SwissGCZ Moderator Staff Member

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    [​IMG]

    UEFA: Round-of-16
    CONMEBOL: Not Started
    CONCACAF: Quarterfinals
    AFC: Not Started
    CAF: Not Started
    OFC: Group Stage
    Host: Not Started

    Starting with this year's O-League the two New Zealand clubs have been separated in the group stage. That means Auckland City could meet Waitakere in the final, and that lowers the chance of another Hekari United upset.

    PS: Interesting to see that AS Tefana also participates in the Coupe de France.
  3. SwissGCZ

    SwissGCZ Moderator Staff Member

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    Quite a few changes in the AFC spot allocations for 2012:

    - Qatar now gets four direct spots in the group stage.
    - India has lost its play-off spot.
    - Iran lost two of its direct spots in the group stage.
    - Uzbekistan now has a combined four spots, with one of them playing in East Asia!
    - Australia has gained a play-off spot (new three teams)
    - South Korea now only has three direct spots (with one play-off)

    Keeping in mind that spots in Asia are mainly awarded on "off-the-field requirements" rather than success, some of these moves once again only make logical sense to the AFC. Qatar with more direct spots than Saudi Arabia? South Korea losing a direct spot? Three Uzbek teams in the West and one in the East?
  4. druryfire

    druryfire BigSoccer Yellow Card

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    South Korea lost a direct spot generally because of the corruption issues in the K-League Cup.

    Uzbekistan getting a spot in East Asia is just absurd really, but this does call for opening the whole thing up now.

    For anyone not in the know, the AFC award points over 11 assessments which include such things as media, which is kind of cruel in a way. For example, the UAE league federation might provide all correspondance to the local newspapers who decide not to publish them, how can they dictate what happens really?

    Anyways, Japan were the highest point scorers, followed by Korea Republic. Qatar came 3rd yet got more spots than the two nations above them!!

    Uzbekistan were ranked 7th, but who knows the logic of the AFC?? AFC already awarded the Uzbeks two youth competitions in recent memory. For such a big continent, only a few nations seem to get any approval.

    Lianoing of China were so outraged at the allocation that they withdrew in protest. They would have been the the Group Stages on previous criteria and were playing within that criteria when it was turned upside down and put into the playoffs.

    If they failed in the playoffs they would be paired in the AFC Cup with tips to Maldives for example, something they weren't happy with. Although you could say, if they didn't win through the playoffs then they didn't really have a right in the ACL anyway.


  5. glennaldo_sf

    glennaldo_sf Member+

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    The Concacaf QFs are:

    Santos Laguna (Mex) vs. Seattle Sounders (USA)
    UNAM (Mex) vs. Isisdro Metapan (ES)
    LA Galaxy (US) vs. Toronto FC (Can)
    Monterrey (M) vs. Morelia (M)
  6. SoccerScout

    SoccerScout Member

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    So what are the chances of a USA team getting in? Why are the 3 MLS teams grouped in the same side of the braquet while the mexicans in the other? Is this to not have a US x US final?
  7. M

    M Member+

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    One could more plausibly argue it's rigged to minimize the chances of a MEX v MEX final, no?
  8. SwissGCZ

    SwissGCZ Moderator Staff Member

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    Interesting, I wasn't aware of the background. Thanks for the info.
    Minimal. As for your second point, have you followed the CCL at all in recent years?

    Mexico is the class of CONCACAF. Since the expanded 'champions league' format was introduced all Primera Division clubs have progressed from the group stage and not a single club was eliminated by a non-Mexican opponent in the knock-out rounds. Not even New Zealand in the OFC can claim such dominance recently. This year Real Salt Lake was the first USA team to reach the final in over a decade - and (as stated previously) they didn't face a Mexican club in doing so.

    Seattle and LA will most likely have to beat two Mexican clubs to win the title. I just don't see that happening. LA also just lost Juninho to Sao Paulo.
  9. glennaldo_sf

    glennaldo_sf Member+

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  10. SwissGCZ

    SwissGCZ Moderator Staff Member

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    Correct. They represent the Canadian Soccer Association and by extension the Canadian Championship. Although I'm sure that won't stop American MLS fans from claiming credit should Toronto actually accomplish something. :D
  11. Cyclonis

    Cyclonis MLS Snob

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    Not for long they ain't

    [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lDK9QqIzhwk"]Bon Jovi - Livin' On A Prayer - YouTube[/ame]
  12. SwissGCZ

    SwissGCZ Moderator Staff Member

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    The AFC CL should be very interesting in 2012. As the K-League is introducing promotion and relegation there will be a transitional season where size of the league is reduced. That means 44 league matches for all clubs not including domestic cup games. In short, the K-League teams will be mighty busy domestically with relegation on the line for the first time ever. All that distraction could be a window for Japanese, Irani and Saudi clubs to win it all.

    Looking at the CAF CL it will be interesting to see TP Mazembe's return. Esperance had the youngest team at the 2011 CWC so I would not be surprised to see them get far once again if the issues in defense can be sorted. Then there are of course the Egyptian powers Zamalek and Al Ahly who want to get back to the top.

    What's the view for CONMEBOL?
  13. druryfire

    druryfire BigSoccer Yellow Card

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    I'm not too sure how relegation will threaten the K.League clubs. In my opinion the league is rather week when you get outside of the top 8 or so. There always seems to be the usual cannon fodder down at the bottom. Should make the league more interesting at the bottom mind. And I guess there's always the chance one of the big clubs could get sucked in.
  14. It's called FOOTBALL

    It's called FOOTBALL Member+

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    Hehe, very true, they always find any reason to inflate themselves over there, even if it's far-fetched.
  15. SwissGCZ

    SwissGCZ Moderator Staff Member

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    In an interesting turn of events in Africa, Swiss coach Michel Decastel left losing 2011 finalist Wydad Casablanca and joined......defending champions Esperance!

    Let's see if he can stabilize the blood & gold defense.
  16. Century's Best

    Century's Best Member+

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    Since 1990, CONMEBOL's champion has been from another country other than Brazil or Argentina only five times - with three such occasions since 2000. 2012 promises to be a very interesting tournament, because we have an eye-catching team from Chile, Universidad de Chile.

    This team went 36 games unbeaten until 12/22/2011. It won Copa Sul-Americana with am aggregate win of 3-0 over Liga De Quito (after ousting Brazilian contenders Flamengo and Vasco da Gama) . It was 1-0 in Ecuador, a feat achieved by few times in recent years, and 2-0 in Chile. Universidad also won its national league by beating Cobreloa 3-0 in the final.

    Universidad de Chile should enter the 2012 Libertadores as the team to watch. It is a side w/ solid ballhandling and passing, quick offensive plays, sound defense, and pressure against opponents' possession. Their team chemistry is impressive; their offense, with Castro, Vargas, Canales, and Lorenzetti is dangerous. I dare say it's the closest CONMEBOL has to Barcelona right now. If Universidad maintains its momentum, it will be a team to be reckoned with in the Libertadores and it should have no trouble to win its group, which also has Godoy Cruz (in its second-ever international tournament), Atletico Nacional of Colombia, and either Caracas or Peñarol, who has lost names from its 2011 campaign.

    As for the rest of the pack... Brazil returns with Santos, the defending champion. It still has Neymar, Ganso, and Elano, and while its defense isn't as good as it was in 2010, it will contend. Vasco da Gama had a great 2011; Fluminense has strengthened its roster and on paper, it is one of the strongest offensive teams in the continent (with Brazilian international Fred). Corinthians won my country's league and has a solid team. Internacional still has names from its 2010 title campaign, acquired Dagoberto, and will want redemption from its poor 2011 showing; if Inter gets past Once Caldas in the playoffs, Internacional should emerge from its group along with Santos. Flamengo has R10, but I don't see it going far.

    Argentina's Boca Juniors returns and it won its country's title unbeaten, which shows it will be a force to be reckoned with. Riquelme is older and has had injuries but if he is in shape, Boca will challenge for the Copa. I suspect Velez Sarsfield is still strong, but I wonder whether they will be the very strong team they were in last year's Libertadores. I can't say much about the rest of Argentina's teams or about the rest of the continent.
  17. SwissGCZ

    SwissGCZ Moderator Staff Member

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    Major Changes to the CONCACAF Champions League

    Not a big fan of this format. Would have preferred a same-size group stage with simply the preliminary round axed. 16 teams instead of 24. You could then have improved the schedule situation by starting the group stage in late July.

    With the reduced number of overall CCL games CONCACAF will now have to pay less travel subsidy. Maybe they can finally have some actual prize money.
  18. jcvf90

    jcvf90 Member

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    Anyone with a Mexican club in their group has no chance. Great job of advancing football in the region.
  19. EvanJ

    EvanJ Member+

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    In the 2011-2012 CONCACAF Champions League, Morelia of Mexico finished ahead of Alajuelense of Costa Rica, but if you take out group winner Los Angeles Galaxy and make it a three club group with Morelia, Alajuelense, and Motagua of Honduras, Alajuelense would have won head-to-head away goals tiebreaker over Morelia. Somebody posted that in another forum on the message board. Motagua got 0 points in the group.
    The new format is really irrelevant to the topic title because the 2011-2012 CONCACAF Champions League that will qualify a club for the 2012 Club World Cup is in progress. The new format will affect who qualifies for the 2013 Club World Cup.
  20. It's called FOOTBALL

    It's called FOOTBALL Member+

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    You can't really retcon in sports, dude. Who's to say that Morelia wouldn't have taken it more seriously if it was a 3-team group? If you go back and change the format, the result won't necessarily be like it was in the current format. Different formats change teams' motivations.

    If it were a 3-team group to begin with, Morelia would have approached it differently and won the group.
  21. jcvf90

    jcvf90 Member

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    Exactly, while Mexican teams don't take it as seriously as we do in Central America, they don't want to lose either. Knowing that a slip up could really ruin your chances, I doubt they would risk their chances by taking as many games as lightly as they did.

    So I'll have to pray that all the Honduran teams end up against an MLS club.
  22. SwissGCZ

    SwissGCZ Moderator Staff Member

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    That's right, but these annual threads are also useful in tracking the various changes across the confederations. In this case the CCL group stage will be over by the time we start talking about the 2013 CWC. Anyway, let's not get into too much detail (that's more appropriate for the CONCACAF board.)
  23. SwissGCZ

    SwissGCZ Moderator Staff Member

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    Barcelona again beat Real Madrid away in the Copa del Rey and I can definitely see this Barca side win the UCL back-to-back for the first time ever in the Champions League era. They wore the newly awarded 2011 CWC badge.

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  24. unclesox

    unclesox BigSoccer Supporter

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    ^^^^^
    Barça actually debuted they FIFA badge last weekend in their 4-2 win against Betis. The pre-match festivities doubled as a celebration of the FIFA World Club title and Lionel's Messi's third consecutive Ballon d'Or.


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  25. SwissGCZ

    SwissGCZ Moderator Staff Member

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    After last night's horrible tragedy in Egypt several Al Ahly players including Abu Trika and Barakat announced their immediate retirement.

    CAF needs to be a lot more strict with clubs who can not ensure the safety of players and fans. There were several riots in the CAF Champions League last year and that can not happen again in 2012.
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