Palmeiras and Al Ahly will seek a place in the FIFA Club World Cup final against Chelsea or Al Hilal. The Brazilians want revenge: last year they lost third place to the Egyptians.
By Facundo Di Bona (@facudibona).
Palmeiras and Al Ahly will meet for the FIFA Club World Cup semi-finals today at 10 PM in Abu Dhabi to find out who will advance to the grand final where they will meet either Chelsea or Al Hilal.
The Egyptian team won against Monterrey of Mexico in the previous phase and comes to this match with high morale.
Al Ahly beat Monterrey 1-0 to reach the Semi Finals of FIFA Club World Cup WITHOUT 10 of their players!
6 of them are at AFCON – Mohamed El-Shenawy, Hamdi Fathi, Amr El-Sulya, Mohamed Sherif, Ayman Ashraf, Akram Tawfik.
Injured: Percy Tau, Badr Benoun, Ammar Hamdy, Salah Mohsen pic.twitter.com/8Cv4alNDJB
— Africa Facts Zone (@AfricaFactsZone) February 5, 2022
The victory was surprising: Al Ahly had 13 casualties between injured, infected with coronavirus and players with the Egyptian national team in the African Cup of Nations.
The players involved with Egypt have already rejoined after losing the final to Senegal, but their coach would not use them, at least from the start.
• Mohamed Abdelmonem
• Mohamed El Shenawy
• Amr El-Solia
• Mohamed Sherif
• Hamdy Fathy
— Lorenz Köhler (@Lorenz_KO) February 7, 2022
Al Ahly is an old acquaintance of Palmeiras: both two-time African and American champions, the Egyptians beat Brazilians to determine third and fourth place in the 2020 FIFA Club World Cup.
After a goalless draw, the Africans managed to win the penalty shootout.
In this new tournament, Al Ahly was able to beat the Mexicans with a spectacular approach by his coach, Pitso Monimane, who also referred to the format of the tournament where the South American and European teams start from the semifinals:
“How much more do Africans have to prove? Why is Palmeiras in the semi-finals and we are not? Didn’t we beat them last year? What is the difference? What is the criteria? You should ask FIFA this”.
"How long do African teams have to prove themselves? Why are Palmeiras already in the Semi Finals of the FIFA Club World Cup? We beat them last year. What's the criteria?"
– Al Ahly's Coach, Pitso Mosimane on unfair advantage given to South America at the FIFA Club World Cup. pic.twitter.com/HKgdYx3HzK
— Africa Facts Zone (@AfricaFactsZone) February 7, 2022
Palmeiras qualified for this tournament as the Copa Libertadores champion and arrived in the United Arab Emirates calmly, but with respect for what was done the previous year.
The Brazilians were the worst participant in the history of Conmebol because they finished fourth and did not even score a goal. Now they have the historical responsibility to vindicate themselves.
Their coach, Abel Ferreira, was consulted about a possible match against Chelsea, but he refused to think about it and recalled that first they have a tough test against another continental champion.
These were the scenes in Brazil, as @Palmeiras headed to the airport from their training centre. ??
— FIFA.com (@FIFAcom) February 2, 2022
Palmeiras hasn’t lost since November and reached the FIFA Club World Cup with a win against Agua Santa for the Paulista tournament.
In any case, the Brazilians do not arrive with shooting: in the Paulista tournament they used more rotation players than starters.
? Dudu: "Everyone from Sao Paulo, from Brazil, from South America knows how passionate @Palmeiras fans are. They’re fanatical. We know what this club means to them & how desperately the fans want to be two-time world champions. We want to achieve this for them so, so much." ??
— FIFA.com (@FIFAcom) February 5, 2022
Today they will surely use most experienced players and, when they thought they could not be there due to coronavirus, Vinicius Sylvestre, Joaquín Piquerez and Gabriel Verón were able to join the squad.
Although Piquerez, the only starter among these three names, would be replaced due to his lack of training last week.
Palmeiras: Weverton; Gomez, Luan, Murilo, Jorge; Rocha, Danilo, Ze Rafael, Scarpa; Veiga, Dudu, Rony.
Al-Ahly: Lotfi; Ibrahim, Rabia, Magharabi; Hany, Dieng, Asha, Maaloul; The Shabbat, Abdelkader, Mohamed.
Although Palmeiras is the clear favorite with an odd of 1.44, we must not forget that in the last FIFA Club World Cup they did not get any wins and did not score goals.
Al Ahly has a price of 7 which is really tempting, but you shouldn’t get too excited and maybe it’s the opportunity to play with the possibilities: draw or Palmeiras and Palmeiras Draw no Bet.
One of the best-looking options is -2.5 goals which has a quota of 1.72 and it would not be strange since Al Ahly will close behind and if possible, park the bus in front of their goal.
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