Toni Kroos wants Real Madrid to take chance to make history at Fifa Club World Cup
Victory in the final on Saturday in Abu Dhabi will give the Primera Liga a record fourth title
Toni Kroos has challenged himself and his Real Madrid teammates to make history on Saturday by guiding their club to a record fourth Fifa Club World Cup crown when they face Al Ain in Abu Dhabi.
Real, who have won the past two tournaments, as well as the 2014 competition in Morocco, currently share the achievement of most titles with La Liga rivals Barcelona on three.
Victory in Saturday's clash with the Arabian Gulf League champions at Zayed Sports City Stadium would put them out on their own and Kroos believes that will motivate them when they take the field against Zoran Mamic's men, who conquered River Plate on penalties after a 2-2 draw on Tuesday.
“It’s very difficult to reach the Club World Cup because you need to win the Champions League, and that’s not easy,” Kroos said following Real's 3-1 win over Kashima Antlers in their semi-final clash on Wednesday night.
“If you do this, you need to try to win this title. We did it last year and the year before. So, we are here with the same motivation to win this again and write history."
Kroos acknowledged that his team were not too familiar with Al Ain, but was confident they would have researched their opponents by the time they take the field on Saturday.
“I didn’t watch Al Ain play but let’s see what kind of team we need,” he said when asked of his thoughts on facing Mamic's team.
“We don’t know them and that makes it a bit difficult but we want to win the trophy. We need to focus on every game and if we can play how we played tonight, we can win.”
Teammate Lucas Vazquez echoed the view of Kroos that they would be taking the threat of Al Ain very seriously despite the fact they had not been initially expecting to face them.
The winger said: “We were expecting to play River Plate in the final and instead we are playing the host team,” he said.
“But that doesn’t surprise us because we played Kashima, who were also the host in Yokohama, in the final two years ago.
“We have to respect any team that reach the final of the Club World Cup and prepare to face them. We don’t know much about Al Ain but we’ll find that out soon.
“We take one game at a time and our focus was on the first game against Kashima. That’s behind us and from now on we prepare to face our next opponent.”
As to their form, Kroos acknowledged that it had taken Real some time to find their range against Kashima before Gareth Bale's hat-trick had fired them to victory.
“We didn’t start perfect but it’s a little bit normal when you don’t know the opponent,” said Kroos.
“You have to find a way to win the game and you see somethings at the start but of course we could have started better than we did. The second half was way better and we deserved to win.”
Updated: December 21, 2018 08:21 AM