It all comes down to this for the Kashima Antlers! The underdog squad has made it to Club World Cup final and they’ll face their biggest challenge on Dec. 18: Cristiano Ronaldo and Real Madrid. Who will walk away with the cup? Click to watch.
After fighting their way through three clubs, the Kashima Antlers have become the first team from Japan to play in the Club World Cup final. However, their Cinderella story is about to become a bit of a nightmare, as they face Real Madrid. Cristiano Ronaldo, 31, Karim Benzama, 28, and the rest of the UEFA Champions League champs stand in between Kashima and the cup. This match is set for 5:30 AM ET so start your day with some sport.
Soccer fans that want to see Real Madrid in action (and possibly win their second Club World Cup in three years) can tune in via Fox Sports – after entering in their cable information. CLICK HERE TO WATCH REAL MADRID VS. KASHIMA ANTLERS CLUB WORLD CUP FINAL LIVE STREAM
Unlike Los Blancos, who made it to the final after just defeating Club America in the semifinals, Kashima had to work their way through the entire tournament. They beat Auckland City in the playoff, shut out the Mamelodi Sundowns in the quarterfinals and blanked Atletico Nacional in a surprising upset. Shoma Doi, 24, opened up the scoring during the match with the Colombian side, with Yasushi Endo, 28, and Yuma Suzuki, 20, finishing them off, 3-0, per The National.
The Kashima Antlers, named because Kashima literally translates to “deer island,” are one of Japan’s most successful clubs. Since their creation in 1947, they’ve won the J. League title eight times, the J. League cup a record six times and the Emperor’s cup four times. This pedigree means they may not get completely demolished by a team often considered the best in the world.
After all, Real Madrid has Ronaldo. The 2016 Ballon d’Or winner proved why he earned the prestigious football award during Los Blancos match with Liga MX’s Club America. In literally the last seconds of the game, Cristiano scored the 500th club goal of his career, helping put the already-winning Real up 2-0. Will he go for goals 501 and 502 in this match? Real Madrid is on a 37-game undefeated streak, so Kashima has a huge challenge ahead of them.
Who do you think will lift the Club World Cup, HollywoodLifers?