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Thursday 10 July 2014

Bayern Munich secure facile win in Club World Cup final

Published 22/12/2013|10:13

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Philipp Lahm of Germany's Bayern Munich holds the trophy as he celebrates with his team mates after winning their 2013 FIFA Club World Cup final soccer match against Morocco's Raja Casablanca at Marrakech stadium December 21, 2013. REUTERS/Louafi Larbi (MOROCCO - Tags: SPORT SOCCER)
Philipp Lahm of Germany's Bayern Munich holds the trophy as he celebrates with his team mates after winning their 2013 FIFA Club World Cup final soccer match against Morocco's Raja Casablanca at Marrakech stadium

European champions Bayern Munich added the Club World Cup to their collection of trophies when they comfortably outplayed Raja Casablanca to win 2-0 in the final on Saturday.

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Defender Dante and Thiago Alcantara scored in the first 22 minutes as Bayern followed up the Champions League, Bundesliga and German Cup treble they won last season.

Raja, who stunned South American champions Atletico Mineiro to reach the final, were comprehensively outplayed and offered only the occasional threat.

Bayern coach Pep Guardiola had won the tournament twice before with Barcelona while the Bavarians lifted the old Intercontinental Cup twice, in 1976 and 2001.

"We started well and played a very good half-hour," he told reporters. "After that it's not easy to play against a team when you're 2-0 up and you don't know them very well. "We have to play until the last minute, that's what our profession demands."

Guardiola started without a recognised striker as winger Xherdan Shaqiri replaced Mario Mandzukic.

Raja, the second team from outside Europe or South America to reach the final since the tournament began in its current form in 2005, were only briefly in the contest.

Mouhssine Iajour fired wide from a half chance in the fifth minute and from that moment the hosts were chasing the game.

Two minutes later, Jerome Boateng headed on a corner to Dante who was left all alone in the penalty area and the Brazilian defender scored emphatically with a shot on the turn.

Raja goalkeeper Khalid Askri was tested by Thomas Mueller and David Alaba before Thiago Alcantara added Bayern's second with only a quarter of the game gone, scoring from the edge of the area after Alaba pulled the ball back.

Bayern were in almost complete control although Raja offered the occasional threat and goalkeeper Manuel Neuer gifted them a chance with a poor clearance in the 38th minute.

Chemseddine Chtibi spared the stopper's blushes by firing his effort just wide of the goal.

The second half was a similar pattern to the first, with Bayern enjoying nearly all of the possession and Raja, who qualified as champions of host nation Morocco rather than African champions, occasionally looking dangerous.

Iajour forced Neuer's first genuine save with a close-range header before Shaqiri hit the bar for Bayern who comfortably held out despite the occasional wobble at the back.

Raja coach Faouzi Benzarti said his players might have been inhibited by the presence of King Mohamed VI in the crowd.

"I felt some players were not aggressive enough, there were some negative points in the first half," he said. "I think they may have been nervous because of the crowd and because of  the presence of his majesty the King."

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