San Lorenzo vs. Auckland City live stream: Time, TV schedule and how to watch the Club World Cup online
A surprise qualifier and a perennial also-ran face off to see who gets the privilege of getting beaten by Real Madrid in the Club World Cup final.
Everyone’s attention has been on the other qualifying bracket in the Club World Cup, where Mexican side Cruz Azul fought their way through to the semi-final only to fall 4-0 to Spanish giants Real Madrid. Maybe one of the more esoterically fascinating matchups, though, is the other semi-final, where surprising Argentine qualifiers San Lorenzo face off against an amateur side from New Zealand in Auckland City.
Auckland have actually built a relatively impressive resume despite their amateur status, with this marking their sixth appearance in the Club World Cup thanks to their successes in the Oceania Champions League despite being a non-professional team. They defeated two African sides to get here, first beating Moroccan side Mogreb Tetouan on penalties in the playoff round, then taking down Algerian representatives ES Setif 1-0 with a goal from defender John Irving in the 52nd minute.
This is the first time Auckland City has made it this far in the competition, though, usually losing in the quarter-final or the playoff round before it. Their best previous finish came in 2009 when they won the fifth place playoff match against TP Mazembe, a side from Congo who were the African champions that year. Auckland were already the most successful New Zealand side ever, but this year’s tournament run will forever seal them a place in their nation’s history books.
Their opponents with be San Lorenzo, a side from Argentina making their inaugural Club World Cup appearance thanks to winning their first-ever Copa Libertadores title in August. This will be their first match in the competition thanks to South America’s bye to the semi-final round (a privilege also shared by the European champions, represented by Real Madrid this year), and fans of the historic Argentinian club are eager to see their team succeed. A large number of San Lorenzo supporters are in Morocco to watch their team play, and hoping to see them make the final against Real Madrid.
It’s been a magical year for San Lorenzo fans, winning the Torneo Inicial of Argentina’s Primera Division at the end of 2013 to earn a place in the Copa Libertadores, then going on a magical run to win the top South American tournament in the summer. The defeated Paraguayan side Nacional 3-1 on aggregate to take the title, lifting the coveted Libertadores trophy and sealing their place in the Club World Cup. Their league campaign since then hasn’t gone as smoothly, sitting in 8th place and 15 points out of first, but the Copa win and any success in the Club World Cup will go a long way towards salving those hurts.
Of course, neither San Lorenzo nor Auckland City stand any realistic chance of upsetting Real Madrid in the final, but they know that. Just getting to the final (or even as far as they have, frankly) is a testament to the successes that these two clubs have experienced, and serves as an affirmation of their efforts to get to where they are. This is a waking dream for these two clubs, one that unfortunately one set of fans will soon have to wake from.
Match Date/Time: Wednesday, 7:30 P.M. local, 2:30 P.M. ET
Venue: Stade de Marrakech, Marrakech, Morocco
TV: Fox Sports 2 (U.S. – English), Fox Deportes (U.S. – Spanish), Canal 7 TV Publica (Argentina), Sky Sport 2 NZ (New Zealand)
Online: Fox Soccer 2 GO (U.S.), Fox Play Latin America (Argentina), Sky Go NZ (New Zealand)