Brazil legend Rivaldo has warned Chelsea that former club Palmeiras could take advantage of their poor recent form to spring an upset in Saturday’s Club World Cup final.
The Blues will be making their second appearance in the competions final this tomorrow. Last time, a Roberto Di Matteo tutored side suffered defeat against Corinthians in 2012.
Thomas Tuchel’s men, who arrived UAE with only one win to show for their last five Premier League outings, were lucky to see out a narrow 1-0 victory over Asian champions Al-Hilal in the semi-final on Wednesday night.
Copa Libertadores winners Palmeiras were more convincing in their semi final triumph against Al Ahly, beating the African champions 2-0 to progress to today’s final.
And while Chelsea head into the game as favourites, Rivaldo, who scored 60 goals in 90 appearances during his two-year stint at Palmeiras, believes his old side have a ‘good chance’ of coming away with the trophy.
‘The Club World Cup favourites suffered when beating Al-Hilal 1-0 and even gave up a few big chances in the second half,’ Rivaldo opined in a chat credited to Betfair.
‘Of course Chelsea is a great team that is chasing their first CWC title after losing to Corinthians in 2012, and just like Palmeiras, they should be focused .
‘But Palmeiras could take advantage of Chelsea’s poor form to claim the title and I think they have a real chance of winning this.
‘Actually, while Chelsea are odds-on to win the game, I would say there is no favourite. This is two big teams clashing for a trophy and anything can happen in 90 minutes.
‘Palmeiras have a good chance of becoming the next world champion.’
Palmeiras, who are taking part in their second straight Club World Cup, have already gone one better at this year’s tournament after suffering a semi-final defeat back in 2020.
Rivaldo added: ‘Palmeiras seem to have learned from their mistakes in last year’s Club World Cup by producing a solid performance in their 2-0 semi-final win against Al Ahly. They were comfortable throughout, looking controlled in every department in what was a solid overall performance.
‘The team must have learnt from their bad performances in last year’s tournament. They were more focused, cutting back on any errors that Al Ahly could take advantage of.
‘So, Palmeiras will be confident in the Final against Chelsea. They will believe it’s possible to beat the Europeans in a single match.’
The Club world Cup final will kickoff by 5:30pm (GMT).