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Soccer Saturday: Your Running Commentary

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A crosstown clash between the second and third place teams in La Liga will kick off a busy Saturday in the world of soccer.

After a 4-1 first leg loss at Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League semifinals, Real return to Madrid this weekend to face rival Atletico, who are determined to beat Real for the first time in 14 years.

While a spot in next season’s Champions League is almost guaranteed for Atletico, a win over Real would draw the two Madrid clubs level in the race for second in La Liga. It is unknown what kind of lineup Real manager Jose Mourinho will use against Atletico later today, but one thing is for certain—Los Blancos will be without star Cristiano Ronaldo, who is out with a thigh injury.

The Madrid derby could have a huge effect in Barcelona on Saturday. If Barcelona defeat Athletic Bilbao and Atletico can get a historic win over Real, the La Liga title will return to Catalonia. Barcelona and Bilbao kick off two hours before the start of the derby.

In England, relegation-threatened Wigan Athletic will look to repeat their shock 1-0 win against Tottenham from earlier this season. While the Latics prepare for a return to Wembley for the FA Cup Final in a few weeks, they currently sit three points back from safe Aston Villa in this season’s relegation battle. If Wigan can get three more points against Spurs, who need all the points they can get in their race for a Champions League spot, they will be level with Villa entering the final four matches of the season.

The day’s action will wrap up in Mexico, where Tigres UANL have the chance to get one step closer to clinching the Clausura title with a home win over Monterrey. If Tigres win and Atlas fail to secure all three points at Puebla on Sunday, Tigres will bring the title back to Nuevo Leon.

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):

7:45am – ESPN2 – Manchester City vs. West Ham United

9:30am – GolTV – Bayern Munich vs. Freiburg

10am – Fox Soccer Plus/ – Everton vs. Fulham

10am – – Southampton vs. West Bromwich Albion

10am – – Stoke City vs. Norwich City

10am – Fox Soccer Channel – Wigan Athletic vs. Tottenham Hotspur

10am – beIN Sport en Español – Levante vs. Celta de Vigo

12pm – beIN Sport – Athletic Club vs. Barcelona

12:30pm – Fox Soccer Channel – Newcastle United vs. Liverpool

12:30pm – GolTV – Fortuna Dusseldorf vs. Borussia Dortmund

2pm – Univision Deportes – Ajaccio vs. Montpellier

2pm – beIN Sport – Atlético Madrid vs. Real Madrid

4pm – beIN Sport en Español – Real Zaragoza vs. Mallorca

6pm – ESPN Deportes – Cruz Azul vs. Santos Laguna

8pm – Univision Deportes – Pachuca vs. América

8pm – UniMás – Tigers UANL vs. Monterrey

9:05pm – Telemundo – León vs. Atlante

10pm – Univision Deportes – San Luis vs. Tijuana


  1. Liverpool has the second most goals in the league and have let up the 6th fewest.

    So apparently, they either lose or kick the crap out of a team.

  2. Fabian Johnson today did not start at left back for Hoffenheim against Nurnberg, but as an attacking midfielder which I have a feeling might have big consequences for the USMNT in May-June. Hoffenheim won 2-1, but Augsburg won also, meaning Hoffenheim still in a relegation slot and three points behind Augsburg. I did not see the game, but did see highlights and Fabian had a wonderful assist on the first goal with Timothy Chandler asleep at the wheel at right back to let the goal go through. Totally hilarious, Timmy jogging up three steps too late after the ball is in the back of the net. (Not sure why Chandler was moved back to his old right back position after playing the last two months at right back.)

    The formation chart on shows Fabian starting at left wing. But in the highlights I saw he was playing central attacking midfielder and was playing it very well. By all accounts, Fabian was one of the best players on the field and was playing passionately, while German news reports listed Chandler (and I am not making this up, although I do enjoy being the messenger here:-) as the flop of the match and looking clueless against the the inspired Hoffenheim offense.

    But golly gee whiz, Timothy still deserves to be a starter this summer on the USMNT and the designated right back for the next 100 years because–hmmm. Well, because–heck, I don’t know. Just because.

    • Who is anointing Chandler? At this point Besler and Gonzo are our CB pair and Cameron and Parkhurst are ahead of Chandler at RB.

      I do think that Fabian belongs in role where he can facilitate. Sticking him on a wing where all he can do is overlap or defend is a waste of his vision and skill.

      • no, Parkhurst is not ahead of chandler. be serious. Dolo is #1 and Chandler is #2. Cameron is still going to start at CB for us.

      • Disagree. I don’t think anybody knows for sure what JK is thinking. Just as easily could see Besler and Gonzo, as Cameron and Gonzo. In first case, Cameron becomes #2 behind Cherundolo, in my opinion. But only JK counts.

        I do think that Biff is overly biased against Chandler. I understand his reasoning, but don’t agree. It seems everytime I read something from you, Biff, Chandler’s name pops up.

        Maybe for your own good, and ours, you could just let it go.
        Maybe you would enjoy the game a little more. Just an idea

  3. WTF. Messi, perpetuating the stereotype that we are all living in some Matrix like program to which he has all the cheats. That goal didn’t seem real.

  4. The Bolton coach may be doing a good job geeting the team to the play-offs, but he sure don’t like to use his subs.

    Spurs don’t belong in the CL, unless they bring some more talent and Defoe learn to share the ball.

  5. Stu and Tim were both on the bench for Bolton today (and remained there the whole game). But the good news is they picked up a point on the road against first place Cardiff and remain in the last promotion playoff spot with one game left, and that game is at home. Pretty amazing comeback the last couple months.

  6. How does 1 judge a striker? By their speed? Commitment? Size? Goals total? Importance of the goals? Who they score against?

    also how do wejudge a world class talent? by their stats or how many trophies they have? it is a team sport after all

  7. Just when some noises are being made about Martinez being an overrated coach, his Wigan team puts on a performance like this. They may not win or even tie this game but Tottenham have created almost nothing.

  8. How can you just gift Bale a goal like that? It’s hard enough to stop him when he actually has to work for it. That was just terrible all around from Wigan

  9. I am always amused/appalled by the cheerless British announcers who would blame Vertonghen on Boyce’s goal. Boyce is big, came from high in the box, caught the ball at the high point, and directed the header perfectly and they only want to focus on the mistake. Sometimes a goal is just very well done.

    • This kind of annoys me, too. What exactly can Vertonghen do to prevent that other than fouling Boyce or punching the ball away with his hand? Sometimes goals are just unstoppable and not anyone’s fault.

    • True in other sports, too. In baseball sometimes you’ll see a pitcher make a mistake and throw a fat fastball right down the middle and the batter fouls it off. Then he will make a good pitch on the outside corner at the knees and the batter will hit it out of the park and the announcers will jump on the pitcher.

      • I do like that MLS is being highlighted, but I think it would be helpful to also have the MLS games in the complete “Soccer Saturday/Sunday” lists, so people can see at a glance when all the games are and plan their preferred viewing accordingly.

        Personally, when I look at these posts I always think “Oh, good, I can watch [some Liga MX] game” — and then I see the later MLS post and realize there’s a conflict between MX and MLS and change the DVR settings. It’s not a big deal, though.

      • Agree on this. It would be a cool idea if they could format the list by time, channel, etc. Put it in a table. I’m not sure if this website format supports that kind of display.

    • City need to use Yaya in a more forward position all the time. And go out and find a guy like they had in De Jong to protect the back four. Yaya much more useful in attacking third.

  10. Darke just made a good point. The professionalism of the league is shown off well today as ManCity and West Ham are playing a good game today. They have not phoned it in.

  11. what is better?

    a Cherundolo or a Dempsey/Bradley

    a Yank who plays at a club long enough, serving well and becoming a true club legend or a Yank who plays for various clubs and strives to play for a top club

    Example. Bradley had 1 season at Chievo but he was AMAZING for them and say if he stayed there for 5-8 more years he could have become their best player ever guiding them to perhaps even the EL.

    or Dempsey. 5 more years at Fulham and he would have become one of their top scorers ever and thus a true Legend for years to come.

    what do we want? They take a chance on multiple moves especially to bigger clubs

    • It’s an interesting discussion point. My answer would be that it varies. For Bradley, it seems okay to move upward in class. Others, not sure yet.

      But really the answer is: it doesn’t matter what we want. It probably only matters what the player wants to do with his career.


    • Dempsey already had scored more premier league goals than any other Fulham player when he left. He eclipsed Brian McBride and both were clearly fan favorites. He made the right move; you always want to better yourself and Tottenham gives him that chance, plus they gave him loads of money. Cherundolo has been a good, steady player, don’t know if he has ever gotten better offers.

  12. if I were Fernando Torres I’d return to my childhood club – Atletico Madrid. Since he’s left, they have had guys like Aguero, Forlan and Falcao who have eclipsed him in the club’s image. Plus maybe he can score there. His only competition ATM is Villa, Llorente, Negredo and Soldado. Plus wingers like Mata and Pedro and even younger guys

    Torres’s advantage is that he is 29 and he’s been around the NT for a decade

  13. good morning all. everyone must be taking advantage of the beautiful spring morning.

    glad to see jozy score again last evening.

    good team goal by City

    Does Deuce get the start for Spurs?


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