Manchester United hit five past Gamba to reach the Club World Cup final

Gamba Osaka 3 – Manchester United 5 (Club World Cup, December 18, 2008) After an impressive start by Gamba, United took the a foothold in the game when Ronaldo flashed a shot narrowly wide, before they took the lead from a set play with Vidic powering home a Giggs corner. Ronaldo then had a solo effort blocked as he searched for the second, and on the stroke of halftime it came when Ronaldo headed in another Giggs’ corner.

After a stagnant start to the second half, the match came back into life when Endo forced a top save from Van der Sar from a crashing free-kick. And the home crowd then went wild as Gamba put together a fine move which was stroked home by Masato Yamazaki. Sixty seconds later though United scored again, sub Wayne Rooney made an instant impact slotting home Fletcher’s through-ball. The match then turned into an attack-fest with United making the most of their chances, Evra and Nani linked up to play in Darren Fletcher for the fourth. And a minute later it was five, Wayne Rooney finishing expertly from a Giggs pass that completed a crazy five minute spell that saw four goals hit the net. Gamba pulled a goal back from the spot after Gary Neville handled in to box, Yashuhito Endo coolly finding the bottom corner. Hideo Hashimoto completed a thrilling match with an excellent strike inside Var der Sar’s near post.

Al Ahly 0 – Adelaide United 1 (Club World Cup, December 18, 2008) Cristiano was the hero for Adelaide in a shock win over the Egyptians, scoring a 25-yard screamer in the 7th minute. (First half highlights here, second half highlights here.)

Pachuca 0 – LDU de Quito 2 (Club World Cup, December 17, 2008) (Longer highlights here.) The Copa Libertadores champions LDU raced into a fourth minute lead with Claudio Bieler slotting home after slack Pachuca defending was punished. The Mexicans fell further behind midway through the first half as Leon curled in a right-footed free-kick. (First half highlights here, second half highlights here.)


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