Can Barcelona stop its current skid and salvage its season?
No, you're not reading a post from a year ago, and no, I'm not writing about Ecuadorian soccer. The above line was a bit of a joke aimed at FC Barcelona's two-match win-less streak.
Yes, that is how good Barcelona has been all season that a two-game stretch without a blowout victory makes you wonder if something is wrong. Well, there isn't really a reason to panic yet, but a loss against Atletico Madrid this weekend would certainly make you start to wonder.
With Real Madrid now just seven points back of Barcelona, Pep Guardiola's men can't afford to slip up now. A Barca loss and Real Madrid win would close the gap to four points with the sides still to face each other on May 3rd at the Bernabeu.
The Barcelona-Atletico Madrid match-up is just one of several pitting European cup participants against one another. Bayern Munich-Werder Bremen and AS Roma-Inter are just a few of the quality match-ups on tap this weekend.
Here is a rundown of the Top 10 matches to watch this weekend, as well as the weekend's full TV schedule:
Top 10 Matches to Watch
1. Barcelona at Atletico Madrid. Fresh off its first league loss of the new year, and a mid-week Champions League tie, Barcelona looks to get back to its winning ways against a dangerous Atletico squad.
2. AS Roma at Inter Milan. Inter is running away with Serie A but Roma is battling for a Champions League place and won't lay down in what should be a contentious affair.
3. Bayern Munich at Werder Bremen. Will Landon Donovan dress or not? If he doesn't, then you can feel free to root for Bremen to knock off their second straight team with a Galaxy player on loan (after eliminating AC Milan from the UEFA Cup at mid week).
3. Rennes at Lyon. Carlos Bocanegra's squad needs points against a Lyon team that will be looking for some revenge for the early-season loss it suffered to this same opponent.
4. Hoffenheim at Borussia Dortmund. You can expect some fireworks here as Hoffenheim looks to try and stay in the title race, while Dortmund tries to stop the slide down the standings.
5. Manchester United vs. Tottenham. So why isn't the Carling Cup Final higher on the list? Because it's the Carling Cup and Manchester United will probably field a B team. It will be as good a B team as you will ever see, but a B Team nonetheless.
6. Espanyol at Real Madrid. Espanyol, the team that just knocked off Barcelona, looks to make it two La Liga powers in a row. Real Madrid will come in with some Champions League distraction and could suffer a similar fate as Barca.
7. Napoli at Juventus. Remember when Napoli was near the top of the Serie A standings and looking like a real threat? Right, neither do we. Seriously though, Napoli may struggle, but they still have some fun players to watch and should be able to push a Juve team with Champions League thoughts on the brain.
8. Fulham at Arsenal. Can you really miss the chance to see red-hot Clint Dempsey go up against a shaky Arsenal team that scored a much-needed win in Champions League play?
9. Pachuca at Chivas de Guadalajara. Jose Francisco Torres and first-place Pachuca take on Chivas and American-born striker (but as yet undeclared international) Jesus Padilla.
10. San Luis at Club America. Watch Michael Orozco tell Edgar Castillo that he picked the wrong national team (okay, so maybe that won't happen, but you can still get to see Orozco in action).
This weekend's Soccer on TV
7:40am- Setanta USA- West Brom at Everton
10am- Setanta USA- Liverpool at Middlesbrough
10am- FSC- Fulham at Arsenal
11:30am- GolTV- Hoffenheim vs. Borussia Dortmund
Noon- FSC- Bologna at Lazio
2pm- GolTV- Sevilla at Athletic Bilbao
2:30pm- FSC- Napoli at Juventus
2:5pm- Setanta USA- Toulouse at Auxerre
4pm- GolTV- Espanyol at Real Madrid
5pm- Setanta USA- Wigan at Chelsea
6pm- Fox Sports Espanol- Atlante at Cruz Azul
6pm- Telemundo- Toluca at Monterrey
6:15pm- GolTV- Cucuta at Millonarios
8pm- Telemundo- Pachuca at Chivas de Guadalajara
8pm- Azteca America- Atlante at Cruz Azul
8:15pm- GolTV- Santa Fe at Medellin
10:15pm- GolTV- Guarani at Palmeiras
7:25am- Setanta USA- Manchester City at West Ham United
7:15am- ESPN360.com- Birmingham at Sheffield United
7:30am- ESPN360.com- Ajax Amsterdam at FC Utrecht
9:30am- ESPN360.com- Vitesse Arnhem at Feyenoord
9:55am- Setanta USA/ESPN360- Manchester United vs. Tottenham (Carling Cup Final)
10am- FSC- Stoke City at Aston Villa
11am- GolTV- Bayern Munich at Werder Bremen
Noon- FSC- AC Milan at Sampdoria
1pm- GolTV- Barcelona at Atletico Madrid
1pm- Telemundo- Tigres at UNAM Pumas
2:30pm- FSC- AS Roma at Inter Milan
2:55pm- Setanta USA- Rennes at Lyon
3pm- Telefutura- Santos Laguna at Necaxa
3pm- Azteca America- Atlas at Puebla
3pm- GolTV- Sao Paulo at Santos
4:30pm- FSC- Newcastle at Bolton
5pm- Setanta USA- Blackburn at Hull
5pm- Univision- San Luis at Club America
6pm- Azteca America- Jaguares vs. Indios
3am- FSC- River Plate at San Lorenzo
Which match-ups are you looking the most forward to? Think Barcelona will continue to slide? Will you be watching the Carling Cup final? Are you secretly starting to become a fan of the Mexican Soccer league because of all the games on TV?
Share your thoughts on this wekeend's soccer on TV in the comments section below.