Chelsea needed a last-gasp penalty to beat Brazilian side Palmeiras and win the Club World Cup for the first time in the club’s history. Kai Havertz was the hero in Abu Dhabi – just as he was in the Champions League final last year – and scored the decisive penalty in the 115th minute.
Thomas Tuchel’s side were constantly threatened by the Copa Libertadores’ champions stubborn back-line, but eventually found the breakthrough courtesy of a powerful header from Romelu Lukaku in the second-half.
However, the Champions League holders’ lead only lasted ten minutes, as Thiago Silva gave away a needless penalty, and afforded Palmeiras’ midfielder Raphael Vega the opportunity to send Edouard Mendy the wrong way from the penalty spot.
Christian Pulisic, an early replacement for the injured Mason Mount, was inches away from scoring the winning goal in the second-half.
In the end, it was left to Havertz to tuck away a late, late penalty, with the German slotting into the bottom corner from 12 yards after a Palmeiras handball.
Daily Express Sport is on hand with all the player ratings for Chelsea’s world champions.
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Antonio Rudiger – 7
The German warrior’s presence allowed Callum Hudson-Odoi to venture forward and threaten the Palmeiras defence. He was a brick wall on the left-hand-side of Chelsea’s backline, Palmeiras seemed to shift their attack to the Blues’ right side to circumnavigate the German.
Rudiger was almost always first to every Palmeiras set-piece and cross – many Blues’ fans will be hoping and praying he puts pen to paper on a new deal.
Cesar Azpilicueta © – 5
A true captain whose steel and determination will always be enshrined in Chelsea folklore, but Chelsea do really miss Reece James. While the Spaniard was more than willing to join the attack, he often lacked penetration, speed, and final product in the final third.
N’Golo Kante – 7
Scurried across the pitch and won the ball just like he always does without fail at the Blues. The Frenchman’s off the ball exploits and hunting abilities often prompted the Brazilians to bypass him by lofting the ball over the Blues’ midfield.
So was one of the few Chelsea players to try and get in behind the stubborn Palmeiras defence.
Mateo Kovacic – 6
Always seemed to be in plenty of space to receive a pass, but the Croatian struggled to find Lukaku with a pass. While he evades opposition presses better than most players, his final pass was once again lacking for the Blues.
Callum Hudson-Odoi – 7
Deployed at left-wing-back against the South Americans, but what an impact the Englishman had.
After a first half where he struggled with his delivery, he delivered the perfect cross for Lukaku to head home into the top corner. One cross is all Hudson-Odoi needed to make an impact
Mason Mount – 5
A lively and industrious presence in the Blues’ frontline, until injury forced him to depart the contest early. Made way for Christian Pulisic after only 30 minutes.
Kai Havertz – 8
As is often the case, Havertz was bright and lively in spells, but struggled to really create any opportunities during normal time.
But with the weight of the world on his shoulders, Havertz once again stepped up when it mattered most.
Having scored the winner over Manchester City in May last year to win the Champions League, Havertz slotted home the winner in the Club World Cup to add another medal to his collection.
Romelu Lukaku – 7
Was starved off service the whole contest but the best strikers only need one good delivery to make a difference. The way in which he peeled off the defense and headed Hudson-Odoi’s cross into the top corner was fitting of a player with a £97.5m price-tag.
Created Chelsea’s best chance in the second-half, by providing Christian Pulisic with a wonderful lay-off to strike. Tuchel’s decision to substitute him for Timo Werner raised plenty of eyebrows.
Christian Pulisic – 7
Introduced into the contest far earlier than expected but was a lively and dangerous presence in the front-line.
The American spent most of the contest lurking just behind Lukaku, looking to either dart in behind or bounce off the Belgian. It was this combination which led to Pulisic’s 72nd minute drive which was inches away from finding the bottom corner.
Timo Werner – 6
In what was a very surprising move, Werner was introduced for Lukaku in the closing stages of the match. However, his pace and direct running often found a way through the Brazilians, even if his end product was not quite there.
Saul Niguez – 6
Introduced in the closing stages of normal time in place for Hudson-Odoi to add another body into central midfield. The Spaniard’s influence was unfortunately minimal.
Hakim Ziyech – 6
Was surprisingly not used in the opening ninety minutes, but had more of an involvement than most of his team mates. Hugged the bi-line and whipped some sumptuous crosses in the box, which a particular Belgian would have likely appreciated much earlier in the contest.
Malang Sarr – 6th
His introduction enabled the Blues to revert to a back four for extra time. Seems to be relishing his new opportunities as an orthodox left-back in a four man defence.