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Last Updated: Sunday, 11 December 2005, 17:00 GMT
Club World Championship: The teams
  • Watch live coverage on BBC TV and for UK users on this website of Liverpool in the Club World Championship.

AL ITTIHAD (ASIA) Lost in semi-finals to Sao Paulo

The club:
Coach Anghel Iordenescu has plenty of big-game experience, having coached Romania at the 1994 and 1998 World Cup finals.

Former Boro striker Joseph Desire Job
Job moved from Middlesbrough at the start of the season

But the Tigers, Saudi Arabia's oldest football club, have seen their preparations disrupted with the news that their Brazilian trio of Pedrinho, Marcao and Lima have all been ruled ineligible for the tournament.

This came about after an official protest by Ahly, Al Ittihad's first opponents in the tournament.

The players:
Former Inter Milan striker Mohamed Kallon is partnered by ex-Middlesbrough star Joseph Desire Job, while defender Hamad Al Montashari made the shortlist for the Asian player of the year award.

After seeing off China's Shandong Luneng and Korea's Busan I'Park, "Itti" saw off Al Ain of the United Arab Emirates 5-2 on aggregate to be crowned champions of Asia.

AHLY (AFRICA) Lost in first round to Al Ittihad

The club:
Africa's representatives share their Red Devils nickname with Manchester United - but have the kind of dominance in Egypt which Sir Alex Ferguson can only dream about.

Mohamed Barakat
Winger Mohamed Barakat is part of the 'Bermuda Triangle'

Former Benfica and Sporting Lisbon coach Manuel Jose took Ahly to the Egyptian title during the domestic season, winning 24 and drawing two of their 26 matches to finish a remarkable 31 points clear at the top.

In their illustrious history, Ahly - known as the 'people's team' thanks to their enormous fan base among Cairo's working-class population - have claimed 30 domestic championships and four top African titles.

The players:
Many put the Egyptians' success down to their so-called 'Bermuda Triangle' of Mohamed Barakat, Mohamed Abutreka and Emad Moteab.

In the African Champions League they reached the semi-finals without major alarm, beating arch-rivals Zamalek 4-2 on aggregate before winning 3-0 over two legs in the final against Etoile Sahel.

DEPORTIVO SAPRISSA (CENTRAL AMERICA) Lost in semi-finals to Liverpool

The club:
Striker Ronald Gomez
Ronald Gomez is also a Costa Rica international
Saprissa were bought for 2.3m in 2003 after financial problems and have since instituted a policy of employing only native-born or naturalised Costa Rican players, instilling a national pride that has seen the club thrive.

The club is coached by Costa Rican legend Hernan Medford, and they have become a dogged, determined outfit.

The players:
Burly striker Ronald Gomez has become a hero to the club's fans, who have nicknamed him The Bullet, while Walter Centeno's creative play is also their key to success.

Saprissa have become the first non-Mexican team from Central America to reach the Fifa World Club Championship, after unexpectedly beating US side Kansas City Wizards and Mexican teams Monterrey and Pumas.


The club:
One of the traditional powerhouses of the South American game, their triumph in this year's Copa Libertadores made them the first Brazilian side to win the competition on three occasions.

Sao Paolo goalkeeper Rogerio
Rogerio is just as happy scoring goals as saving them

Sao Paulo have won 21 regional Paulista championships and three Brazilian national championships (1977, 1986 and 1991) and have seen modern stars like Zetti, Cafu, Muller, Antonio Carlos and Rai coming through the ranks.

The players:
Goalkeeper Rogerio Cemi is a free-kick specialist with 45 career goals to date, while Uruguayan defender Diego Lugano is an old-school South American stopper.

Sao Paulo's entry to the tournament came via their Copa Libertadores victory, during which they saw off the likes of River Plate and thrashed Atletico Paranaense 5-1 in the final.

SYDNEY FC (OCEANIA) Lost in first round to Deportivo Saprissa

The club:
Sydney were only formed this year but are based in Australia's largest city and have managed to attract some big names including ex-Manchester United star Dwight Yorke and seven Australia internationals.

Sydney striker Dwight Yorke
Striker Yorke won the treble with Man Utd in 1999

They are coached by West Germany legend Pierre Littbarski - and former Tottenham and Norwich midfielder Ian Crook is his assistant. They play in a 43,000-capacity stadium.

The players:
Yorke's success with Aston Villa and Manchester United make him the club's highest profile player, but captain David Zdrilic, part of the Australia side that qualified for the World Cup, and former Socceroo Steve Corica are also crucial players.

They won a knock-out tournament against their fellow A-League clubs first off to represent Australia in the Oceania championships - in which they beat teams from New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Tahiti and Vanuatu. They eventually overcame New Caledonia's AS Magenta 2-0.


The club:
Liverpool are one of England's most famous and successful clubs, with 18 league titles, five European Cups and six FA Cups among their many honours.

The club dominated English football in the 1970s and 1980s but have also had to endure their share of problems since then, although they are currently a top-three side in the Premiership.

The players:
Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard
Midfielder Gerrard is Liverpool's most influential player
Captain Steven Gerrard is Liverpool's talisman, and the heartbeat of the side in midfield.

The Reds have gone 10 games without conceding a goal with defenders Sami Hyppia and Jamie Carragher, and goalkeeper Jose Reina on top form.

An unforgettable night in Istanbul saw Liverpool recover from 3-0 down to win the Champions League on penalties against AC Milan.

Liverpool fans endured a tortuous route to the final, with only a late goal from Gerrard against Olympiakos in the group stages keeping them in the tournament with Bayer Leverkusen, Juventus and Chelsea all seen off along the way.

Al Ittihad 1-0 Ahly
11 Dec 05 |  Football
Sydney FC 0-1 Deportivo Saprissa
12 Dec 05 |  Football
Al Ittihad 2-3 Sao Paulo FC
14 Dec 05 |  Football


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