Sergio Ramos says Real Madrid enthusiastic about prospect of defending Fifa Club World Cup title
European champions prepare to face Al Jazira in semi-finals as they bid to become first team to win tournament back-to-back
Sergio Ramos has underlined Real Madrid’s commitment to defending their Fifa Club World Cup crown this week after they arrived in the UAE late on Sunday.
The European champions are looking to become the first side in history to win the tournament back-to-back and face UAE club Al Jazira in the semi-finals on Wednesday night. The match, a sellout, takes place at Abu Dhabi’s Zayed Sports City stadium.
The winner of that encounter will then contest Saturday’s final against either Brazil’s Gremio or Mexico’s Pachuca, who play each other on Tuesday.
Ramos is focused only on what his team do, though, with the Madrid captain emphasising upon touching down in the Emirates that Zinedine Zidane’s men are here with one thing on their mind: adding to their already-stocked trophy cabinet.
"We were really looking forward getting here," Ramos told Madrid's official website. “Being here is a prize. We have the opportunity to defend this title and win it again.”
Madrid come into the tournament in fine form having defeated Sevilla 5-0 in the Primera Liga on Saturday. They will train in Abu Dhabi on Monday night, before undergoing another two sessions on Tuesday.
Madrid are seeking to join Spanish rivals Barcelona as the only side to capture the Club World Cup three times. They have won the Intercontinental Cup, an earlier version of the tournament, three times also.
"Now we have to adapt after the journey and fight to win our sixth Club World Cup,” Ramos said. “We’re going into it really enthusiastically and with a real desire to take part. It’s an opportunity to win another trophy for our fans.
"We’re really motivated after a great game against Sevilla and we’re on a good run at the moment. We must now look to maintain this balance and consistency."
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Updated: December 11, 2017 03:54 PM