Inter have nothing to fear from Barcelona - Coach

December 16, 2006

YOKOHAMA, Dec 16 (Reuters) - Libertadores Cup holders Internacional have nothing to fear from hot favourites Barcelona in the Club World Cup final, coach Abel Braga said on Saturday.

Seeking to gain the pyschological edge before Sunday's match in Yokohama, Braga said he had been singularly unimpressed by Barcelona's efforts in this season's Champions League.

'If you look at how they played in the Champions League against Chelsea it was not exactly high quality,' Braga told reporters.

'I respect the fact they have several talented players but I'm sleeping comfortably at night.'

European champions Barcelona lost 1-0 at Chelsea and were then held 2-2 at home by the English champions before scraping into the knockout stage of this season's Champions League.

Barca are odds-on favourites to win the Club World Cup for the first time and demonstrated exactly why by thrashing Mexico's America 4-0 in the semi-finals.

However, Braga believes Inter are capable of springing an upset.

'We will play much better tomorrow than on Wednesday,' said Braga, referring to the Libertadores Cup holders' 2-1 semi-final victory over Egypt's Al Ahli in midweek.

'We have enormous respect for Barcelona but sophistication alone does not win titles. Hopefully our togetherness and spirit will make the difference.'

Inter captain Fernandao, meanwhile, confirmed that Barcelona's Brazilian star Ronaldinho would receive close attention on Sunday.

'Obviously we will need to mark him very closely,' he said. 'Otherwise it could be disastrous for us.'

Brazil's Sao Paulo beat Liverpool 1-0 in last year's final in the first edition of the revamped FIFA tournament involving the world's six continental champions.