FIFA organizes the Club World Cup each year as the highest competition of the club football where they assign the world title to the winning side. FIFA first organized this championship as the FIFA Club World Championship in 2000. This competition took a brief pause from 2001 to 2004 due to the collapse of FIFA’s global marketing partner, the Swiss sports marketing company, International Sport and Leisure. FIFA then organized this championship each year since 2005.
Brazil hosted the inaugural edition of the FIFA Club World Cup in 2000. The Intercontinental Cup merged with the Club World Cup in 2005 and became the “FIFA Club World Championship”. The competition then changed to its current name in 2006. The year’s winner of each of the seven football federation under FIFA (AFC Champions League, CAF Champions League, CONCACAF Champions, Copa Libertadores, OFC Champions League, and UEFA Champions League) takes part in this tournament.
FIFA Club World Cup History
AC Milan’s former president Silvio Berlusconi first presented the idea of the global club competition to the Executive Committee of FIFA in Las Vegas, United States, way back in December 1993. FIFA’s then-president Sepp Blatter started to make the framework of this tournament in 1994. FIFA selected nine countries as the potential host of the world championship in the inaugural year. But, only Brazil, Uruguay, Mexico, and UAE showed their interest to organize the tournament that year. FIFA then finally selected Brazil as the host of the tournament on 3rd September 1997.
FIFA announced a total of $28 million prize money and also sold the television rights of the competition to 15 broadcasting companies across five continents for $40 million. The first draw of the inaugural FIFA Club World Cup took place at the Copacabana Palace Hotel in Rio de Janeiro on 19th October 1999. FIFA first planned to organize the first ever club world championship in 1999, although they had to postpone their plan for a year.
English Premier League club Manchester United, Spanish club Real Madrid, Brazilian clubs Corinthians and Vasco da Gama, Mexican club Necaxa, Saudi club Al-Nassr, Moroccan club Raja Casablanca, and Australian club South Melbourne took part in the first edition of the FIFA Club World Cup. French footballer Nicolas Anelka scored the first goal in the FIFA Club World Cup for Real Madrid as they defeated Al-Nassr by 3-1. The final match of the inaugural edition was played between Vasco da Gama and Corinthians. Brazilian side Corinthians became the champions of 2000 edition after defeating Vasco by 4-3 on penalties.
FIFA Club World Cup Play-off Format
The Intercontinental trophy and the Toyota trophy merged with the FIFA Club World Championship and became the new FIFA Club World Cup in 2005. It then became much shorter than the previous formats with only six reigning continental champions participating in this tournament. The first draw of this newly-designed Club World Cup took place at The Westin Tokyo in Japan on 30th July 2005. São Paulo defeated Premier League club Liverpool in the final of the 2005 edition and Mineiro became the first player ever to score in the FIFA Club World Cup final.
Japan hosted the first four seasons (2005, 2006, 2007, and 2008) of the newly formed FIFA Club World Cup. UAE then got the chance to host this prestigious tournament for the next two seasons (2009 and 2010). The football world first witnessed a non-Latin American and a non-European club to reach the final for the first time in the FIFA Club World Cup history. Inter Milan defeated the Congolese side TP Mazembe by 3-0 score to win that edition of the Club World Cup.
FIFA Club World Cup then again came back to Japan for two seasons (2011 and 2012) before moving to Morocco for two seasons (2013 and 2014). Japan again became the host for the third time in tournament’s history. They successfully organized the championship in 2015 and 2016. The Club World Cup then moved to UAE last year where Real Madrid defeated Brazilian side Grêmio to lift the cup.
FIFA Club World Cup Upcoming Expansion
FIFA President Gianni Infantino suggested an expansion of Club World Cup from 7 teams to 32 teams in late 2016. He proposed that format from the 2019 edition onwards and also proposed the rescheduling of the tournament to June for the benefit of sponsors and broadcasters. The FIFA committee again proposed in late 2017 to expand the tournament to 24 teams and also increase the frequency to 4 years. They also proposed the plan to replace the FIFA Confederations Cup with the new FIFA Club World Cup.
The new tournament will have its first edition in 2021 where 24 teams will participate in 31 matches. The tournament will be held in every four years after that. 12 teams will play from the European continents, 4 or 5 teams will be from Latin American, Two each from Asia, Africa, and CONCACAF, and one club from Oceania. 24 teams will be divided into eight groups after which all the winners of each group will advance to the knockout stage.
FIFA Club World Cup Champions
European clubs under UEFA took the most titles; they won 10 times and became the runner-up thrice till now. South American clubs took the cup 4 times and became the runners up 8 times till now. The Asian or African club are yet to lift this prestigious trophy, although then achieved the runners-up spot once and twice respectively. Auckland City achieved the third place in the 2014 edition and is now the only club from Oceania to reach the semi-final stage of the FIFA Club World Cup.
Country-wise Spain has won the most trophy having six cups under their name. Besides, they also became the runners-up once till now. Brazil holds the second spot with 4 titles and 3 runners-up spot till now. Italy, on the other hand, already took the title twice, although they never achieved the runners-up spot. English clubs took the title once and became the runners-up twice till now. Here are the top 10 most successful clubs at the FIFA Club World Cup:
|Rank||Country||Club||Title||Runners-Up||Winning Years||Second Place Years|
|1||Spain||Barcelona||3||1||2009, 2011, 2015||2006|
|2||Spain||Real Madrid||3||—||2014, 2016, 2017||–|
|10||Brazil||Vasco da Gama||—||1||–||2000|
FIFA Club World Cup Records
Cristiano Ronaldo is the current highest goalscorer in the FIFA Club World Cup history with seven goals under his name. He, along with his former Real Madrid teammate Toni Kross, now holds the most winning record as they both lifted the FIFA Club World Cup trophy four times till now. Egyptian footballers Mohamed Aboutrika, Wael Gomaa, and Hossam Ashour hold the record for most appearances as they played 11 matches of the FIFA Club World Cup.
Spanish club Real Madrid now holds the record of most wins without any loss with their 6 straight victories in the FIFA Club World Cup. They, along with Barcelona, also holds the record for the being the champions for the most number of times; both the club lifted the FIFA Club World Cup three times each till now. Real Madrid also scored the most number of goals in the tournament history (25), and Al Ahly conceded the most number of goals in the tournament till now (15).
FIFA Club World Cup Sponsors
From the inaugural season till the end of 2014, Japanese automobile company Toyota Motor Corporation was the presenting partner of the FIFA Club World Cup. The Alibaba Cloud of the Alibaba Group is the current presenter of the Club World Cup as they have the agreement till 2022. The inaugural season of this tournament had six main event sponsors: Hyundai, McDonald’s, JVC, Fujifilm, MasterCard, and Budweiser.
The current FIFA partners of the Club World Cup are Adidas, Coca-Cola, Arwa, Powerade, Fair Play, FIFA.com, Gazprom, Hublot, Qatar Airways, Visa, Wanda Group, and Event Sponsors. Besides, Etisalat and Mubadala are the current event sponsors of the FIFA Club World Cup. Besides these sponsors, all the clubs participating in this tournament has their own jersey sponsors and advertising partners.
So, here are the details about the Club World Cup. And, don’t forget to check out our exclusive details about the 2018 FIFA Club World Cup.