11/12/2008 22:36,

Who are... Adelaide Utd?

Adelaide are up and running at the FIFA Club World Cup after beating Waitakere 2-1 in Thursday's tournament opener. If they also defeat Gamba Osaka, they'll play United in the semi-finals. But what's their story?

The Australian A-League’s second-oldest club were founded in 2003 and finished top of the revamped league during their inaugural season in the competition in 2005/06. The fledgling side have come a huge distance in such a short spell, even enticing Brazilian legend Romario to play four games for them in 2006/07.

How did they get to Japan?
Australia’s A-League winners beat Uzbekistan champions Bunyodkor 3-1 to become the first Aussie side to play in the Asian Champions League final – where they came a cropper over two legs to Gamba Osaka. However, they qualified for a play-off spot as the highest-placed non-Japanese side in the Asian Champions League.

The boss: Aurelio Vidmar
Vidmar, a Socceroos favourite who won 53 caps, took over in 2007. “I’m sure I’ll make some mistakes along the way, but I’ll learn from them.”

Fighting talk
“We’re hoping for success over Gamba, and then on to United,” said Dodd, before Adelaide beat Waitakere!

Look out for... Travis Dodd

Wearing number 13, this right winger and local lad skippers Adelaide United. In 2007, he became the first Australian to score a hat-trick in the Asian Champions League and currently has two caps for the Socceroos.

Also look out for number 10 - Adelaide’s own Cristiano. A native of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, he currently averages a goal every other game after a move from Dutch side Roda JC.

Next match
Adelaide v Gamba Osaka 14.12.08
Winners play United in the semi-finals


Premier League