Barcelona routed Santos 4-0 in the final of the Club World Cup on Sunday in a formidable display of one touch passing, attacking firepower and possession football. The scoreline humbled South American club champions Santos and underlined Lionel Messi’s position as the best player in the world in the wake of a much touted rivalry between Messi and Santos striker Neymar. Barcelona raced to 3-0 lead at halftime thanks to goals by Messi, Xavi and Fabregas. Despite a 5 man back line, Santos defended sloppily and allowed Messi too much space on the right flank, from which he tended to cut inside and head toward goal. Santos looked more threatening in the second half but failed to convert a Neymar shot and ended up conceding a fourth goal ten minutes from time. After the match, Santos coach Muricy Ramalho remarked that no one can beat Barcelona though he pledged his team would attempt to return to the Club World Cup final next year with the hope of winning the title. Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola, meanwhile, oozed admiration for his team’s performance by noting that Barca played “like artists” and that Messi delivered a near perfect performance, under pressure. Before the match, Neymar had remarked how he plans to continue playing in Brazil until 2014. After being humbled by the Spanish champions, however, one wonders whether Neymar and Ganso will opt to ply their trade in Europe after taking a lesson in footballing mastery from the Catalan greats.