With their victory at the Club World Cup on Friday, Manchester City won their fifth major prize of the year, meaning they will be making history this Christmas.
In Jeddah, Pep Guardiola’s team defeated Fluminense of Brazil 4-0, with goals from Phil Foden and an own goal being bookended by a brace from Julian Alvarez. A significant altercation between Fluminense midfielder Felipe Melo and Kyle Walker, in which the former had to be restrained by his teammates, partly spoiled the festivities.
While City was solidifying their place as the greatest side in the world, Liverpool and Arsenal, the Premier League’s top contenders, were playing on Saturday, drawing 0-0 at Anfield. After Tottenham defeated Everton, the Blues will spend Christmas in fifth place. On December 27, they take on the Toffees at Goodison Park.
These are the headlines for Sunday evening.
Alvarez maintains that he is “very happy” at City in spite of ongoing rumours that suggest he would leave.
Alvarez, who is currently a world champion for both his club and his country, scored twice and added an assist in City’s 2-1 victory over Fluminense in the Club World Cup final on Friday. He has participated in most of City’s games this season, but he finds himself in a difficult situation because he is only able to play as a striker when Erling Haaland is either rested or unavailable.
A player of his calibre will inevitably draw attention, and Alvarez has been connected to a move abroad in the event that one of the biggest teams in Europe needs a striker. Real Madrid has been floated as a possible landing spot.
Melo of Fluminense has reiterated his assertions that he stood up for his team after the Club World Cup final because Jack Grealish was being disrespectful, even though the City player has denied it.
Just after the final siren, with City having defeated Fluminense 4-0 to win the world championship, players from both sides gathered together. Melo spearheaded the Brazilian side’s pushing, involving Grealish and Walker. Later on in the game, he said Grealish had been yelling “ole” as City was keeping the ball, but Grealish specifically refuted that accusation on social media.
In response, Melo has now said that Grealish did not treat his side with respect, and as a result, he ‘defended’ both his younger teammates and his own squad.