Jose Mourinho's sacking from Manchester United 'a shame', says Real Madrid's Marcelo

Lucas Vazquez

The win secures Real a place in Saturday's Club World Cup final.

He did not have to wait long for another opportunity and duly doubled his team's advantage eight minutes after the restart by seizing on a calamitous mix-up between Kashima defender Shuto Yamamoto and goalkeeper Kwoun Sun-tae to find the empty net.

Real, who have won the Club World Cup three times, will reach the final with a victory in Abu Dhabi but Solari again had to defend his treatment of Isco, who has struggled for matches since he took charge.

And previous year it was Ronaldo who bagged the victor in a 1-0 result over Gremio.

Asked about his managerial future, Mourinho said (as quoted by the Daily Mail): "No, you know me".

File image of Jose Mourinho.

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Hoffenheim claimed the advantage in the 16th minute after Aymeric Laporte bundled over Benjamin Hubner. Guardiola looked on in disbelief along with the supporters inside the Etihad Stadium.

Kashima Antlers, from Japan's J1 League, qualified after winning the Asian Champions League last month but, despite a lively start and a late consolation from Shoma Doi, they were clearly second best.

However, his stock remains high in Europe and, according to Spanish newspaper El Pais, he is already being lined up to lead a rebuild of Real Madrid and was twice offered a return this season. "I see a great chance of him managing Real Madrid", said Mijatović on Carrusel Deportivo.

Kashima did start brightly, Serginho finding room in the Madrid defence to get in a second-minute shot that was tipped wide by Thibaut Courtois, with Gen Shoji glancing a free header wide from the resulting corner. A neat one-two with Marcelo on the edge of the area set him in behind and Bale guided the bouncing ball into the far corner.

After Bale's opener, Benzema nearly added a second five minutes into the second period but his goal-bound effort was cleared off the line by Yamamoto, with keeper Kwoun beaten.

The first claimed the trophy in 2014 when Bale scored in a 2-0 win over San Lorenzo.

Three clear, Madrid were home and dry, and Bale departed on the hour, replaced by Marco Asensio while Casemiro, recovered from an ankle injury, came on to make his first appearance since Nov 12. Initially ruled offside, VAR showed Endo was level but a comeback never looked likely.

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