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Soccer Wednesday: A Look Ahead

TFCCaps (Getty Images)

Despite European leagues winding down and no MLS games until the weekend, there's still an eclectic array of soccer on Wednesday.

Between the UEFA Europa League final, Copa Libertadores quarterfinals, a U.S. women's national team pre-World Cup friendly and Canadian championship, there's plenty of entertaining soccer to go around.

Here's a closer look at Wednesday's action:


Porto vs. Sporting Braga, 2:45 p.m., DirecTV (on delay on GOLTV, 8 p.m.)

Porto has been the class of Portugal all season, going undefeated (27-0-3) in league play this year and running away with the championship. It finished 38 points and three places clear of Braga in the league and can cap its stellar season with European silverware. Its strike tandem of Falcao and Hulk is worth the price of admission alone.

Braga upset Porto's chief rival, Benfica, to reach the final and has nothing to lose in trying to spring another upset on the grand stage in Dublin, Ireland.


Libertad vs. Velez Sarsfield, 6:30 p.m., Fox Deportes
Santos vs. Once Caldas, 9 p.m., Fox Deportes

Argentina's Velez is in the driver's seat, carrying a 3-0 lead into the second leg of its tie with Libertad in Paraguay.

Santos, meanwhile, nurses a 1-0 lead over Juan Carlos Osorio's Once Caldas heading into the home leg in Brazil.

If unreal comebacks from the past rounds of this year's Copa Libertadores have taught us anything, it's that these ties are still far from over.


U.S. women's national team vs. Japan, 7 p.m., ESPN2/

The U.S. women continue to prepare for next month's World Cup with its second friendly against Japan in four days. The Americans took the first meeting, 2-0, in Columbus, Ohio, behind a strong performance from Abby Wambach.

The win was costly, though, as the USWNT lost midfielder Lindsay Tarpley to a torn ACL in the match, and she'll miss the World Cup.

The two nations will play the rematch in Cary, N.C.


Vancouver Whitecaps vs. Toronto FC, 10 p.m.

The two MLS sides battle it out in the first leg of the Canadian championship at Empire Field, the site of Vancouver's season-opening 4-2 victory over the Reds back in March.

The Whitecaps haven't won in MLS since then and struggled to get by the Montreal Impact in the Canadian semifinals. TFC, meanwhile, has started to find its way and coasted by FC Edmonton to reach the final. With a strong performance on the road, the Reds could take a big step in sealing their third consecutive Canadian title.


How do you see Wednesday's matches unfolding? Do you think Braga can upset Porto in the Europa League final? Which MLS team do you see taking the advantage in the Canadian championship?

Share your thoughts below.


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