ABU DHABI – Mexican club Pachuca routed Emirati side Al Jazira 4-1 on Saturday evening to finish third at the FIFA Club World Cup, its best-ever result in the tournament.
In its fourth appearance at the Club World Cup, Pachuca surpassed its previous best-ever result from 2008, when the club came in fourth.
Pachuca also equaled the best result by a Mexican club at the tournament, with Necaxa and Monterrey being the only other teams from that country to achieve a third-place finish.
The Mexican club took the lead in the 37th minute at Zayed Sports City Stadium in this capital when Jonathan Urretaviscaya took advantage of some shabby defense by Al Jazira and poked the ball past net minder Khaled al-Senani from inside the area.
But a drop in intensity by the 2016-2017 CONCACAF Champions League winners at the start of the second half paved the way for the local team to draw level.
Khalfan Mubarak got Al Jazira on the board with a close-range shot in the 57th minute, finishing off a play in which the United Arab Emirates league winners had numerous chances to score.
Al Jazira’s happiness was short-lived, as Pachuca’s Franco Jara scored his team’s second goal four minutes later after receiving a perfectly placed pass from Angelo Sagal.
One minute after taking the field, 17-year-old Roberto de la Rosa scored the third goal in the 79th minute after a total breakdown in Al Jazira’s defense, while Sagal capped off Pachuca’s comfortable win by converting a penalty in the 84th minute.
The Club World Cup final – pitting the reigning UEFA Champions League winners Real Madrid against Brazilian side Gremio, the Copa Libertadores champions – is being played Saturday night, also at Abu Dhabi’s Zayed Sports City Stadium.