We have a myriad of games going on this weekend, everything from top class European and South American leagues to the Indian league, and you could pretty much hunker down in front of your computer or TV and watch soccer nonstop for two days. Here’s a couple of matches that are worth keeping an extra eye on.
Tottenham Hotspur – Aston Villa (English Premier League Gameweek 32)
Two teams that are in two very different situations come together early Saturday. Tottenham is still in the hunt for a top four position and a spot in next season’s Champions League, whereas Aston Villa is battling for survival in the top flight. The Spurs are in sixth with 54 points, same as Liverpool in fifth, seven points behind Manchester City in fourth. They have relied heavily on newly capped English international Harry Kane to provide the goals for them this season and Kane is the joint top scorer in the league with 19 goals on the season together with Diego Costa (Chelsea). Aston Villa sits two spots above the relegation zone in 15th with 29 points. They will hope that Christian Benteke can keep on scoring as he had a hat trick in Villa’s 3-3 against QPR. Only seven points divide Sunderland in 14th and Leicester at the bottom.
Sevilla – Barcelona (Spanish La Liga Gameweek 31)
Barcelona travels to Sevilla on Saturday and the Catalonians are looking to stay clear at the top of the table. Barca is currently four points ahead of Real Madrid and is on a six-game winning-streak in the league. Lionel Messi is second in scoring with 33 goals, four goals behind Cristiano Ronaldo, and Neymar is in third with 17 goals. Sevilla sits in fifth with 61 points and they are trying to get passed Valencia in fourth to get a chance to compete in the Champions League. Sevilla is only a single point behind Valencia so it’s a wide open race for that last Champions League spot. Carlos Bacca has had a great season for Sevilla and he’s tied for third in scoring with Neymar on 17 goals. They also have a very crafty midfielder in Ever Banega that can cause the Barcelona defense some trouble.
Manchester United – Manchester City (English Premier League Gameweek 32)
The Manchester Derby kicks off a packed soccer Sunday. This is a classic meeting and with the opportunity to get ever closer to clinching one of the Champions League spots, this has all the ingredients to become another memorable game between the Reds and the Citizens. United are in third with 62 points, one point ahead of City in fourth. This game is not just about the points, but about bragging rights in the community. City has won the last four previous meetings between the sides in the league, so United fans and players are eager to put a stop to that trend. Wayne Rooney will be looked to add to his 11 derby goals, and for City they have several great attacking players such as Sergio Aguero and David Silva. Robin van Persie is said to be back healthy for United, so we’ll see if he gets to feature in this game.
IFK Gothenburg – Malmo FF (Swedish Allsvenskan Gameweek 3)
The Swedish league just started up and IFK Gothenburg has two straight wins to start the season. IFK won the opening game 1-0 over Atvidaberg and followed it up with a 2-0 win over Orebro. Danish striker Lasse Vibe who was the league’s top goal scorer last season got on the scoresheet against Orebro. Malmo are the reigning champions and have brought in some quality players during the offseason. Two Norwegian midfielders stand out as Magnus Wolff Eikrem and Jo Inge Berget both have experience from the Premier League when they represented Cardiff City. Malmo beat GIF Sundsvall in the season opener 4-1 and then drew 0-0 against AIK Solna on Thursday. These are the two most successful clubs in Swedish soccer history and they both have great followings, so the atmosphere at Gamla Ullevi in Gothenburg will be electric.
LA Galaxy – Seattle Sounders (MLS Gameweek 6)
The defending MLS champions the LA Galaxy has had a rough start to the 2015 season, and with only five points in five games, they are currently in eight in the Western Conference. After winning the season opener 2-0 over the Chicago Fire, the Galaxy had two straight draws against Portland and Houston. They come off two straight losses against D.C. United and Vancouver. Seattle sit in fifth in the Western Conference with seven points after four games. Seattle won a tight 1-0 game over Houston last weekend with Obafemi Martins getting the lone goal after an assist by Clint Dempsey. Seattle went down to 10 men after Gonzalo Pineda got sent off in the 57th minute, but they managed to ride out the storm and grab the three points. These are two well supported teams so there won’t be many empty seats at StubHub Center in Carson, CA.