Al-Ittihad 3-0 Auckland City: Karim Benzema makes Club World Cup history in opening win

Karim Benzema scored his fifth goal in 10 Club World Cup matches to put Al-Ittihad 3-0 up against Auckland City

Karim Benzema became the first player to score in four Fifa Club World Cups as Al-Ittihad opened the 2023 edition with a 3-0 win over Auckland City.

Benzema completed the scoring following goals by Romarinho and former Chelsea midfielder N’Golo Kante.

Saudi Pro League holders Al-Ittihad are representing the host nation and face African representatives Al Ahly in the second round.

European champions Manchester City enter the cup at the semi-final stage.

Al-Ittihad defeated New Zealand side Auckland City, who were representing Oceania at the tournament, with three goals in 11 first-half minutes.

Brazilian forward Romarinho opened the scoring in the 29th minute with a deflected effort before Kante doubled the lead five minutes later with a superb strike from a loose ball in the box.

Benzema then completed the scoring frenzy in the 40th minute to set up Friday’s tie with Al Ahly of Egypt.

The winners will face Copa Libertadores champions Fluminense in the semi-finals. Premier League champions Manchester City are in the other half of the draw, and face Mexico’s Leon or Japan’s Urawa Red Diamonds on 19 December.

Benzema, 35, is appearing in his sixth Club World Cup having played in five with Real Madrid.

He has won every Club World Cup in which he has previously played, in 2014, 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2022.



Formation 4-3-3

  • 34Grohe
  • 13Al Shanqiti
  • 26Hegazy
  • 15Mahboob
  • 12HawsawiSubstituted forBamasudat 85′minutes
  • 8Fabinho
  • 7KantéSubstituted forAl Jaman Al Amriat 78′minutes
  • 16Al GhamdiSubstituted forAl Sahafiat 85′minutes
  • 90da SilvaSubstituted forNeves Filipeat 59′minutes
  • 9Benzema
  • 10CoronadoSubstituted forJamalat 78′minutes


  • 1Al Muaiouf
  • 4Om Hawsawi
  • 6Jamal
  • 11Neves Filipe
  • 17Al Sahafi
  • 25Salmeen Al Menhali
  • 28Bamasud
  • 33Al Olayan
  • 77Al Jaman Al Amri
  • 88Al Mermesh
  • 99Hamed Allah

Auckland City

Formation 5-4-1

  • 1Tracey
  • 12MuratiSubstituted forKilkollyat 83′minutes
  • 14Vale
  • 25den Heijer
  • 4GraySubstituted forMitchellat 84′minutes
  • 13Lobo
  • 8GarrigaSubstituted forLeeat 57′minutes
  • 2IlichSubstituted forZhouat 68′minutes
  • 7Howieson
  • 10ManickumSubstituted forTadeat 68′minutes
  • 19Gillion


  • 3Mitchell
  • 5Boulet
  • 6Bell
  • 9Kilkolly
  • 11De Vries
  • 15Carey
  • 16Lee
  • 18Ciganda
  • 20Tade
  • 22Zhou
  • 23Rogers
  • 24Wallis

Tori Penso


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