A lot of the European league have wrapped up their seasons, but there’s still plenty of exciting soccer to look forward to over the summer, with several internationals tournaments and the MLS in full swing. Here’s a few games worth paying some extra attention this weekend.
Rostov – CSKA Moscow (Russian Premier League Gameweek 30):
CSKA has had a great run of form in the latter part of the season, winning five straight league games and outscoring their opponents 15-2. The winning-streak has put them in a great spot to qualify for the Champions League next season. CSKA is in second place with 59 points, and although they can’t catch up to winners FC Zenit Saint Petersburg, they must still keep third-placed Krasnodar at bay as they also have 59 points.
Rostov is fighting at the bottom of the table and is looking to avoid the relegation playoffs. So both teams will be going for a win in this final game of the Russian Premier League season, with CSKA being the big favorites. Roman Eremenko leads CSKA with 13 league goals.
Arsenal – Aston Villa (FA Cup Final):
The FA Cup Final at Wembley Stadium is always an exciting event, and this year will be no different as two classic clubs will clash on Saturday. Arsenal finished the Premier League in third place, behind winners Chelsea and Manchester City. Aston Villa managed to salvage the season and stave off relegation after a really poor first half of the season. After firing manager Paul Lambert and replacing him with Tim Sherwood, the team started to play a lot better and the goalscoring picked up significantly.
Star striker Christian Benteke had a great finish to the season for Villa and ended up with 13 league goals, and the Belgian international is now rumored to be on his way away from the club. Alexis Sanchez has been phenomenal for Arsenal throughout the season and the Villa defense will have to pay extra attention to the Chilean international.
AJ Auxerre – Paris Saint Germain (French Cup Final):
PSG is going for the double after winning a third straight Ligue 1 title. Swedish superstar Zlatan Ibrahimovic could be back in the team after missing a couple of games with a calf injury. But the team has been playing well despite Ibra’s absence. Uruguayan international Edison Cavani has done a good job as the starting striker, and has scored 30 goals in all competitions, including 18 league goals.
AJ Auxerre finished 9th in the French second division, Ligue 2. The Burgundy club was 12 points of a promotion spot, and is still trying to find a way back to Ligue 1. Auxerre spent 32 straight seasons in the top flight before being relegated after the 2011/2012 season. Vincent Gragnic lead the team with 8 goals in 15 league games.
Seattle Sounders – NY Red Bulls (MLS Gameweek 13):
Seattle is rolling in the MLS, topping the Western Conference with 23 points in 12 games. The Red Bulls have shown that they’re a hard team to beat, and currently sits in third in the Eastern Conference with 4 wins, 5 draws, and 2 losses. The Sounders are playing well on both sides of the pitch, scoring 18 goals while only allowing 9.
Clint Dempsey leads Seattle in scoring with 7 goals so far on the season, and is tied for second in the league. Bradley Wright-Phillips leads the Red Bulls with 5 goals. The Red Bulls won the last meeting between the teams last year 4-1, with Wright-Phillips scoring a hat trick.
Nigeria – Brazil (U-20 World Cup):
The 2015 FIFA under-20 World Cup is taking place in New Zealand, and Brazil is one of the favorites alongside Argentina and Germany. These international youth tournaments are the perfect spot to discover the stars of the future and the Brazilian team is stacked with talent, like usual. Brazil is playing in Group E together with Hungary, Nigeria, and North Korea.
Brazil’s Andreas Pereira (Manchester United) is one of the players to keep an extra eye on during the tournament. The 19-year old made his Premier League debut this season and recently signed a new three-year contract with the Red Devils. Nigeria has a star-player of their own in Manchester City’s Kelechi Iheanacho. The 18-year-old striker was the Golden Ball winner when Nigeria won the under-17 World Cup back in 2013.