Champions League holders Chelsea earned a 1-0 victory over Saudi Arabian side Al Hilal at Abu Dhabi’s Mohammed bin Zayed Stadium on Wednesday to book their place in the final of the Club World Cup.
Thomas Tuchel’s side opened the scoring on 31 minutes when striker Romelu Lukaku powered home from six yards out, but failed to convert any of their other chances, despite a dominant performance against the Saudi Arabian side.
Chelsea will meet Copa Libertadores winners Palmeiras for the title on Saturday.
Chelsea were by far the dominant side in the opening spell, with most of the play in Al Hilal’s half, but failed to capitalise on several chances before Lukaku opened the scoring in 31st minute after a defensive mistake dropped the ball at his feet.
The Premier League side continued to pile pressure on Al Hilal but looked disconnected in front of their opposition’s goal, with Kai Havertz hitting the post shortly after the break and several attempts skimming just wide of Abdullah Al-Mayouf’s goal.
Al Hilal found a foothold with 30 minutes remaining on the clock, coming close to equalising through Moussa Marega, Odion Ighalo and Jang Hyun-soo but their efforts were covered well by Chelsea goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga.
Chelsea have never won the Club World Cup, having lost to Corinthians in their only previous appearance in 2012.
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