Matches you can’t miss this weekend

1 Oct

CHELSEA VS ARSENAL (Sunday, 11:00am Fox Soccer Channel)
What a better way to start your Sunday than a good ol’ London Derby? Of course with Arsenal, questions and drama loom. Flappy Handski looks to start in net after “impressing” midweek. (Watch the replays again. It was a poorly taken PK that he saved and the shot he “pushed” aside wasn’t pushed at all. He completely miss-hit the ball with weak hands and got lucky it went wide.) Fabregas and Diaby are in doubt as well. Would it make a difference though? We don’t know how a full strength Arsenal would fare because they haven’t been full strength in a decade. But based on what they bring to the table, and what Chelsea bring to the table, the Arsenal look to be outmatched. They’ve only beaten Chelsea twice in the past 17 meetings, and were demolished last season 5-0 on aggregate. I doubt we’ll see any surprises. Prediction: 3-1 Chelsea comfortably.

INTER MILAN VS JUVENTUS (Sunday, 2:30pm Fox Soccer Channel)
Juventus, although they sit in ninth position, are only three points behind the leaders in what is an extremely even Serie A table. Can the old lady regain some momentum and start playing consistently? Last weekend was Roma’s chance and they seized the opportunity over Inter. Something tells me the league leaders won’t let up again, especially at home. Prediction: 2-0 Inter

RENNES VS TOULOUSE (Sunday, 3:00pm Fox Soccer Plus)
2 vs 3 in a battle for top of the table. Who would have thought these two would be battling for top spots at this point in the season? So sell the Ligue 1 short. Outside of Germany it has been the most entertaining league in Europe. Last year Rennes won their home leg 4-1 and lost away 3-2. So, I’ll go with the home side for this one. Prediction: 3-1 Rennes

SUNDERLAND VS MANCHESTER UNITED (Saturday, 9:45am ESPN2)
The Black Cats already scalped Arsenal this season with a very late equalizer. Now come the kings of letting in late goals – Manchester United. The atmosphere will be cranked up and should be quite an enjoyable match. Prediction: 2-1 United

TOTTENHAM VS ASTON VILLA (Saturday, 10:00am Fox Soccer Channel)
Another edition of “who wants fourth position?” Villa currently claim fifth while a lackluster Tottenham of late sit only two points back in eighth. Tottenham is fresh off their Champions League spanking of Twente at White Hart Lane. Let’s see if they’re able to channel that European energy to an important league match against Villa. Prediction: 1-1
SEVILLA VS ATLETICO MADRID (Sunday, 11:00am ESPN Deportes)
First match for new Sevilla manager Gregorio Manzano. Atlético Madrid pose a stern test, currently sitting two places and two points above Sevilla. With Barcelona and Real Madrid off to stuttering starts, and Valencia and Villareal sitting 1-2, neither club can afford to drop points in this one. Expect plenty of open, attacking play. Prediction: 2-2
BORUSSIA DORTMUND VS BAYERN MUNICH (Sunday 1:00pm ESPN Deportes)
League leaders Mainz went into Bayern’s house last week and beat them 2-1 to stay top of the table. Now the Bavarian outfit travels to the 2nd place team in the Bundesliga. If Bayern wants to remain optimistic about challenging for the title this season, they must win this match at Dortmund. Prediction: 2-2.
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