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Your Running Commentary

Soccer Saturday: Your Running Commentary

ArsenalChelsea (Getty Images)

By JUSTIN FERGUSON

This busy Soccer Saturday will start with a bang in London as first-place Chelsea welcome third-place Arsenal to Stamford Bridge for a crucial match between English Premier League title contenders.

Chelsea have never lost a home league match under manager Jose Mourinho, and they will look to keep that streak — and more importantly, their advantage atop the league — intact as the Gunners visit West London. The Blues will try to rebound from their 1-0 loss to Aston Villa last weekend without midfielders Ramires and Willian, who each had late red cards at Villa Park. Arsenal are focused on keeping their league momentum going with a road win as they continue their late-season push without several key players.

The two other title contenders in the EPL, Liverpool and Manchester City, will be in action in the middle slate of matches. High-scoring Liverpool travel to 19th-place Cardiff City, while Manchester City battle last-place Fulham at Ethiad Stadium. Later in the day, Manchester United begin their tough stretch without Champions League savior Robin van Persie with a road fixture at 12th-place West Ham United.

Elsewhere, Bayern Munich look for their 18th consecutive victory in Bundesliga play against Mainz, who Bayern defeated to start their long winning streak. In Serie A, AS Roma take on Chievo Verona away from the Stadio Olimpico, and league-leading Cruz Azul visit Atlas to highlight Saturday night’s Liga MX action.

If you will be watching today’s action, please feel free to share your thoughts, opinions and some play-by-play in the comments section below.

Enjoy the action. (Today’s TV schedule is after the jump):

8:15am – Derby County vs. Nottingham Forest – beIN Sports USA

8:45am – Chelsea vs. Arsenal – NBC Sports Network

10:30am – Mainz 05 vs. Bayern Munich – GolTV USA

11am – Cardiff City vs. Liverpool – NBC Sports Network

11am – Everton vs. Swansea City – Premier League Extra Time

11am – Hull City vs. West Bromwich Albion – Premier League Extra Time

11am – Manchester City vs. Fulham – Premier League Extra Time

11am – Newcastle United vs. Crystal Palace – Premier League Extra Time

11am – Norwich City vs. Sunderland – Premier League Extra Time

11am – Granada vs. Elche – beIN Sports en Español

11am – Middlesbrough vs. Queens Park Rangers – beIN Sports USA

11am – Aberdeen vs. Kilmarnock – Fox Soccer Plus

12pm – Marseille vs. Rennes – Univision Deportes

1pm — Torino vs. Livorno – beIN Sports USA

1pm – Espanyol vs. Levante – beIN Sports en Español

1:30pm – West Ham United vs. Manchester United – NBC Sports Network

1:30pm – Borussia Mönchengladbach vs. Hertha BSC – GolTV USA

2pm – New England Revolution vs. Vancouver Whitecaps – MLS Direct Kick

3pm – Real Valladolid vs. Rayo Vallecano – beIN Sports en Español

3:45pm – Chievo vs. AS Roma – beIN Sports USA

3:45pm – PSV Eindhoven vs. Roda JC – GolTV USA

4pm – Montreal Impact vs. Seattle Sounders – MLS Direct Kick/Univision Deportes

4pm – Real Salt Lake vs. LA Galaxy – NBC Sports Network

4:30pm – Toronto FC vs. D.C. United – MLS Direct Kick

5pm – Athletic Bilbao vs. Getafe – beIN Sports en Español

6pm – Colorado Rapids vs. Portland Timbers – MLS Direct Kick

6pm – Columbus Crew vs. Philadelphia Union – MLS Direct Kick

6pm – Peñarol vs. Cerro – GolTV USA

7pm – Club America vs. Veracruz – Univision Deportes/Univision

8:30pm – Sporting KC vs. San Jose Earthquakes – MLS Direct Kick

8:30pm – FC Dallas vs. Chivas USA – MLS Direct Kick

9pm – Pachuca vs. Chiapas – Univision Deportes

9:30pm – Tigres UANL vs. Queretaro – UniMás

10:05pm – Club Leon vs. Cruz Azul – Telemundo Deportes/Telemundo

11pm – Atlas vs. Chivas de Guadalajara – Univision Deportes

192 comments
  • byrdman

    I guess i didn’t realize just how bad Paulo di Canoi was. He brought in most of these guys and they are horrible. Abysmal. Horrid. etc… Poyet doesn’t impress me, but the talent level of the Black Cats is definitely not equal to those around them.

    Like

    • beachbum

      Poyet had them playing better for a while, in the Cup competitions. Some of the things that worked for them then are not present now. Mainly anyone in midfield, whatever their official position listed in the program, who can link simple passes quickly going forward and side to side. you know, play soccer.

      and an incredible dearth of service paired with an overabundance of shots from the parking lot into the 15th row

      Like

      • biff

        yes, Poyet did have them playing well for awhile, especially the famous wins in Cup competitions. But those wins could end being Sunderland’s downfall. Sunderland probably would have more league points today if they would have been knocked out of both Cup competitions early. Now the whole team looks drained and does not seem to be much fire anymore. Poyet seemed to know this in the interview he gave a few days ago.

        Anyone know if Jozy’s contract is good for the Championship League?

        Like

      • beachbum

        Cup competitions for teams with no depth is very tough, good call

        Like

  • KEEP

    The majority of major of MLS teams play a more attractive game than Sunderland. I don’t know why I keep tuning in to these games…

    Like

  • Fair observer

    Hey Brett, there’s your favorite player Alonso messing up again….. You’re right, he’s a GREAT defender….

    Like

    • Brett

      The only way you can win a debate is to make things up. I never said Alonso was a “great defender”.

      Like

      • Fair observer

        Just baiting you until y agree that he is a bad defender. Haha. Smile buddy

        Like

  • Fair observer

    If I was jozy I’d fire my agent for getting him sent to sunderland……

    Like

  • Mr. Kaplan

    The Middlesborough-QPR game was much better and the second QPR goal was just bizarre and then another within a minute. Middlesborough 0 – QPR 3.

    Like

  • John

    If we could take the fight of Boyd, the touch and shot of Johannsson, the heading of EJ, the poaching sense of Wondo, and put them all into one player we could have a pretty good striker.

    Like

    • away goals

      Or we could just, you know, take all those traits of johannsson and we have a pretty good striker.

      Like

      • Fair observer

        And put him in a proven 2-striker formation with a complimentary player like jozy. Smaller faster dribbling striker with bigger stronger volley/header/passing striker…. Crazy, never seen that before…….

        Like

    • Mo

      Gentlemen,we can rebuild him
      We have the technology
      we can make him better than he was before
      better…stronger…faster

      Like

  • TomG

    Much better play by Jozy in the second half. He was actually quite good. No excuse for that first half, though. The whole team came out flat as a board and he played right into it. If he’s going to succeed at a relegation fodder club like Sipunderland, he has to stand out and raise himself above the level of his teammates instead of playing down to their level. That’s part of maturing and becoming a top player. He needs to grow up a bit still.

    Like

    • Fair observer

      I’m pretty sure were about 27 lobbed passes to jozy and only 3 ground passes to him the whole game. No striker will success with that play. By lobbed balls I don’t mean crosse. I mean where a defender or cdm just lobs a hopeful ball and says “make something out of THIS!” Just terrible play. Earlier this season sunderland was really getting better at moing the ball around on the ground and building. Now they only knock balls up kickball style an ball watch. I can’t wait for jozy (and hopefully Giac too) to get off this team. Borini might even be better off back at Liverpool as a sub

      Like

      • Brett

        It’s as if Jozy were a wall and they are just playing for the wild deflections coming off his lunky frame.

        Like

      • TomG

        No question Sunderland was pathetic, but Jozy still has to come out with energy and focus, win balls, make good passes and put in a good shift. He did not do this in the first half. Part of being a top player is staying sharp when those around you are not.

        Like

      • Increase0

        Yep, Jozy doesn’t always work hard all game. He seems to feed emotionally off the the rest of his team. They play well—> he plays well. They play badly —> he plays badly.

        Like

      • GW

        Really?

        Replace Jozy with EJ or Boyd or Johannsson,or Wondo, or Herc.

        How do you suppose any one of them would do?

        Like

  • Fair observer

    So for anyone commenter that has been saying jozy is the only problem with sunderland being bad, please watch this Norwich game……. If that’s not enough proof that sunderland are terrible which effects jozy then I don’t know what is, perhaps the rest of sunderland games where their mids are sill terrible will prove it then….

    Like

  • espada

    With the way Sunderland’s playing, the only way I see for Altidore to gain confidence and start scoring again is to play with the Nats.

    Like

  • hudson

    He also didn’t scored in the recent friendly match in Europe, so it’s not like he can flip a switch and suddenly start getting goals with the U.S. It looks realistically like he could end the season with one Premiere League goal. In those few times when he does find the ball at his feet, I’d like to see him turn and shoot instead of laying off the ball all the time. You can’t score if you don’t shoot. If he could get even a couple goals at the end of the season it would boost his confidence going into the World Cup. But Klinsmann may have some hard decisions to make when it comes to his starting striker(s).

    Like

    • Fair observer

      I agree that jozy should become a lil more selfish and turn an shoot. His strengths sre unselfish play to try and set team mates up and first time shots after a teammate lays a ball off for him. The latter never happens and with the former, his teammates don’t want to shoot when he passes it to them. All in all, he’s not on the same (terrible) page as the rest of his teammates. With the USMNT, they at least know his style and can generally give him the passes he likes. The Ukraine game was missing key players in the midfield that usually play him better balls (aka MBTFC).

      I for one hope to see how JG might work on the left providing link up ground play with jozy

      Like

  • apw

    So John Brooks returns to the lineup and Hertha give up three in the first half. Anybody watching? Is he at fault?

    Like

    • John

      First was a great strike out side the box opposite his side. Second a set piece that wasn’t his mark. I didn’t see the third.

      Like

      • apw

        I just saw the highlights, first two were not him but he was beaten poorly on a 1-2 with strikers for the third. At least he is getting minutes.

        Like

      • Louis Z

        On the third goal he rushing in to intercept a play developing in midfield. get there a split second too late. forward tracks back enough to pull RCB, gives the ball right back to the player that Brooks originally tried to intercept. score.

        Like

  • Remy

    Watching the Revs vs Vancouver game and MU vs WHU at the same time. The regular MLS referees are worse than the replacement ones. Bring back the scabs!

    Like

    • Increase0

      One just managed to get in Bradley’s way. Ref’s must not be match fit. Too busy being on “vacation.”

      Like

  • Shimmzy

    Jozy Altidore has had eight teams in eight years. Freddy Adu has had eight teams in eight years. Coincidence????!?

    Like

  • Expat4455

    I am getting pretty sick of reading all these comments on how bad Jozy is, he missed this, he did that wrong. Please get a clue people, Sunderland stinks! Absolutely stinks! From what I have seen of his play Jozy in the only attacker on the team that has a clue.

    For sure, Jozy is not sper world-class, not in Renaldo territory, but he is plenty good. He seeks out space, runs the whole game, can take on any defender one-on-one, and is a team-player.

    You all just wait and see how he plays when he has Julian Green on the pitch with him.

    Like

    • John

      Have you seen an reports on Julian and Bayern II from today? I just saw they had a 2-2 draw.

      Like

      • Expat4455

        No John, I was at the soccer pub watching Liverpool-Cardiff on one screen and Bayern-Mainz on another and drinking bloody marys and talking with Liverpool fans. I will check though..

        Like

      • Expat4455

        Bayern II goes to 10 men in 31. minute. Julian gets yellow card at 40. minute. Bayern are leading 2-1 when in 94. minute Aschoffenburg scores with a penalty kick.

        Julian did not score a goal, no mention in any articles whether he assisted on any of the 2 Bayern goals.

        Like

      • Expat4455

        But of course Increase0. it was only a 4th tier Bundesliga match and Julian did squat. I mean, what soes that tell you? Another Freddy?

        Like

  • i don't care if MLS is a top 10 world league, i want the USMNT to be a top 10 team

    I miss Bradley at ROMA. it was a tough situation but stick it out. Be the first player off the bench. Maybe you start in 50% of games this season or next, but you have CL football next season and a title run. Go for it.

    You were leading the Vanguard of Yanks in Europe as was Dempsey at Spurs. Gaining respect from the Italians is truly something to behold.

    MLS is probably 20 years away from being a threat to the PL, but the NT are maybe 10 years away from becoming a legit top 10 footballing NT if we put in the work. I just don’t get why he left ROMA besides the $$$$$. Let’s be honest. Playing for Toronto or back in MLS won’t add to his abilities and though he may help the coverage of soccer in USA/Canada, it won’t help as much as him playing back at ROMA

    Like

    • John

      Yeah the fact is after this summer we’ll really have no idea how good he actually is just playing in MLS. Brazil is massive for him as well as the league.

      Like

    • Brad

      This guy must be from Colorado. I usually say only English fans are this delusional about their national team, but wow.

      Like

      • Expat4455

        LOL, this has to be a regular commenter here who came up with a different nym, a sock-puppet. I wonder, just who can he be?

        Like

  • BeardedSoccer

    Wow… Gonzalez has been crap so far this season… and he’s our starting cb for the world cup?

    Like

  • John

    Bedoya draws a PK and the defenders sent off, Nantes now up 2 men with 6 minutes left, need to hold on for these 3 points

    Like

    • Increase0

      Up 2 men, man should be enough just to play keep away for a while. Good job on Bedoya. I rather like both he and Zusi. Both them can take turns chasing Ronaldo this summer.

      Like

      • John

        Yeah they get it done, Bedoya seems to be in a more central role recently when he comes on for Nantes. On the foul he made a great run spliting the defenders. He might of tripped on the ball but the defender had to stretch out giving the ref a call to make.

        Like

  • Expat4455

    All of you must agree with me on this. Julian Green knows what just happened, knows what has been asked on him, knows what he is about to undertake, knows what the stakes are, (for Bayern, the Bundisliga , the USA and for himself).

    The pressure on this 18 year old kid must be unbelievable. So, I forgive him for having a so-so game today in the 4th division of the Bundesliga, Good God people, don’t you think Julian has a lot on his mind right now? Maybe he is, at this point in his live, thinking of only one thing, the USMNT match against Mexico? The kid is only 18 you know.

    Like

    • Increase0

      We know it. He has a one or maybe 2 friendlies to make an impact. I hope he gets a game at Bayern to ease the pressure. It’s not quite fair but… if he is gunna go the WC he has to earn it somehow. High risk high reward and high pressure to go with it. We all hope it goes well though.

      Like

      • Expat4455

        No Increase0, he is not going to get minutes for Bayern before the Mexico friendly. No chance. btw, if Julian had not declared for the U.S. then he would have had minutes by now. But this is too important. If Pep puts him in a game now, the kid would have no concentration, how could he, when he is under such incredible pressure.

        At this point in time, Julian can think about one, and only one, thing, the USMNT and the match with Mexico.He must do this! And I say this with some experience, from both playing and coaching, when one has the skill the victory comes down to concentration, and I believe this kid is doing everything right.

        I

        Like

      • John

        I don’t think the bar is too high for Julian. Aron came into the Bosnia match and just had a couple nice touches and everyone was sold. Yes theres alot of hype but no one expects him to score against Mexico. Just show a flash of that potential everyone believes he has and he’ll be fine. He just has to look like he belongs.

        Like

      • Expat4455

        So sorry John, Aron, and how old is he by the way, has never experienced the pressure the Julian is seeing, and never will. Not even close.

        And where did you get “the bar is too high for Julian”. You did not get that from me. Please, I will speak more slowly, the bar is set incredibly high for Julian, higher than any bar that was ever set for any other soccer player for America.

        That is why I said Julian, at this moment in his life, can only concentrate on that one thing, if he is to win.

        And I said I have every conference that this 18 yr. old has the mental toughness to do it.

        Like

      • Expat4455

        John, Okay, now that I have settle down a little, I see better what you said. But believe me when I say this, Julian is not thinking, even a little, to “look like he belongs”. He is on thinking on a much higher plane than that.

        Like

      • Flavius

        I have a couple of questions for you. How often do drink and, do you have a brother that lives in El Paso?
        Just wondering.

        Like

      • Expat4455

        I am happy to answer your questions Flavius, btw, whose sock puppet are you? But putting that question of mine aside, No, I do not have a brother living in El Paso, But I do have a sister living in Juarez. She is only 17 and she is cherry.

        Like

    • Gary Page

      While that is true, you also have 18 year olds playing in college football games in front of 100,000 and college basketball players who are 18 and playing for national championships.
      Finally, you have always had 18 year olds fighting and dying in wars. Now that’s pressure. Just to putt things in perspective.

      Like

    • Brett

      Wow, if he’s as mentally soft as you claim, he has no business going to Brazil.

      Like

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