The 20th edition of the Club World Cup will be staged in Saudi Arabia this December, with Champions League winners Manchester City among the teams participating.
A total of seven teams from six confederations will be competing for overall glory and this will be the final staging of the event in its current format, with the tournament set to be expanded to 32 teams in 2025.
The Club World Cup is an international men's football competition organised by FIFA, the sport's governing body.
The inaugural edition in 2000 was held in Brazil, where Corinthians were crowned champions, while the 19th staging of the tournament took place in Morocco earlier this year with Real Madrid lifting the trophy for a fifth time.
The Club World Cup involves the winners of that year's AFC Champions League (Asia), CAF Champions League (Africa), CONCACAF Champions League (North America), Copa Libertadores (South America), OFC Champions League (Oceania) and UEFA Champions League (Europe), along with the host nation's national champions, who all participate in a straight knockout tournament.
A draw is held to determine the match-ups of the second round, which is between the first-round winner and teams from AFC, CAF and CONCACAF, while the winners of those two matches go on to face the teams from CONMEBOL and UEFA in the semi-finals.
The winners of both semi-finals contest the final, while the two losers from the last four face off in the third/fourth place clash.
Real Madrid were crowned champions when the tournament was last staged in February 2023, with Los Blancos claiming a memorable 5-3 victory over Saudi Pro League giants Al-Hilal in the final.
The last three editions of the tournament have been staged in February, but this year's event has been switched back to its traditional December slot.
The opening match will take place on Tuesday 12th December as Saudi Pro League title holders Al-Ittihad take on 2023 OFC Champions League winners Auckland City in the first round.
Champions League holders Manchester City enter the tournament at the semi-final stage on Tuesday 19th December, with the final scheduled for Friday 22nd December.
The entirety of the tournament will be staged in the Saudi Arabian city of Jeddah, with five matches, including the final, taking place at King Abdullah Sports City, while the other two matches are set for the Prince Abdullah Al Faisal Stadium.
This will be the first time Saudi Arabia has hosted the Club World Cup, but the Middle East is no stranger to staging the event, which has been held on multiple occasions in both the United Arab Emirates and Qatar.
|Manchester City||UEFA||2022/23 Champions League winners|
|Fluminense||CONMEBOL||2023 Copa Libertadores winners|
|Urawa Red Diamonds||AFC||2022 AFC Champions League winners|
|Al Ahly||CAF||2022/23 CAF Champions League winners|
|Club Leon||CONCACAF||2023 CONCACAF Champions League winners|
|Auckland City||OFC||2023 OFC Champions League winners|
|Al-Ittihad||AFC (host)||2022/23 Saudi Pro League winners|
Spanish giants Real Madrid have won the Club World Cup a record five times, claiming the spoils in 2014, 2016, 2017, 2018 and most recently the 2022 edition which was held earlier this year.
Barcelona are next on the list, winning on three occasions, while Corinthians and Bayern Munich are both two-time winners.
All matches will be broadcast across FIFA’s digital platforms, while the last edition of the Club World Cup was also shown via the BBC Red Button and iPlayer service.
Manchester City may be competing at their first Club World Cup, but Pep Guardiola's side will start as heavy favourites to lift the trophy, something European teams have achieved at each of the last 10 stagings of the tournament.
The Citizens will enter the competition at the semi-final stage where they will take on the winner of the second-round tie between Club Leon of Mexico and Urawa Red Diamonds from Japan.
In the other half of the draw, this year's Copa Libertadores winners Fluminense will also begin their trophy challenge at the semi-final stage.
Fluminense will face either Egyptian outfit Al Ahly, who are guaranteed their place in the second round, or either Al-Ittihad of Saudi Arabia or Auckland City from New Zealand, with those two sides set to face off in the tournament's only first-round contest.