Monday, January 10, 2011

Midweek TV Preview: 10 - 13 January

Monday 10 January
13.15 India v Australia, AFC Asian Cup Group C, British Eurosport 2
The Asian Cup kicked off on Friday and thankfully for us in the UK, British Eurosport have picked up the coverage. Should be a comfortable start to the tournament for the Socceroos playing a Indian team short on prepartion and having lost their last two fixtures 9(नौ)-1 and 5(पांच)-0 to Kuwait and UAE respectively. Australia will have a number of familiar names on show while the Indians have only one non-domestic based player in their squad: Kansas City's Sunil Chhetri.

16.15 South Korea v Bahrain, AFC Asian Cup Group C, British Eurosport 2
Bahrain beat Japan in qualification for this tournament but have struggled to find form over the past 12 months. The Koreans qualified on the strength of finishing third in the last tournament - Asian generosity at its finest.

19.30 Rangers v Kilmarnock, Scottish FA Cup 4th Round, BBC1 Scotland
Excellent cup tie in prospect with Kilmarnock having suffered just one defeat in the last ten. Rangers will hope the tug-of-war between Birmingham and Fiorentina (yes, Fiorentina) for the services of the League's runaway top scorer, Kenny Miller, won't prove too much of a distraction.

19.45 Crusaders v Glenavon, Irish League, Sky Sports 1/HD1
Don't think Irish football is worth watching? Well check out Matty Burrows' goal for Glentoran against Portadown, shortlisted for FIFA's Goal of the Year Award, which is being handed out today.

20.00 Crawley Town v Derby County, FA Cup 3rd Round, ESPN/ESPN HD
If I hear the words "the one trophy that eluded his father" I won't be responsible for my actions.

Tuesday 11 January

13.15 North Korea v United Arab Emirates, AFC Asian Cup Group D, British Eurosport 2
Apparently "Bend it like Beckham" was aired on North Korean TV on Boxing Day - the first Western film to be shown there. Should be a decent game in this tournaments Group of Actual Death as long as the Supreme Leader doesn't change North Korea's tactics at half time.

16.15 Iraq v Iran, AFC Asian Cup Group D, British Eurosport 2
Oh come on, you seriously don't honestly need any more encouragement to watch this do you?

19.45 West Ham United v Birmingham City, Carling Cup Semi Final 1st Leg, BBC2/BBC HD
A lot of focus on the current West Ham (and former Birmingham) board here, especially after Avram Grant's comments regarding the club being destabilised from the inside. Seem to be the only people not thankful to Karren Brady for blocking the Steve Sidwell move is Aston Villa fans.

Wednesday 12 January

16.15 China v Qatar, AFC Asian Cup Group A, British Eurosport 2
Qatar could be the first team dumped out of their own tournament after losing the opener 2-0 to Uzbekistan. Still, they can get plenty of Brazilian ringers in before 2022, can't they.

16.30 Palermo v Chievo, Coppa Italia Round of 16, ESPN/ESPN HD
Not had enough cup action? How about some for Italy? Chievo are in awful form at the moment while Palermo are still sniffing around the Champions League spots and must be favourites to join Parma in the Quarter finals.

19.45 AFC Wimbledon v Luton Town, Blue Square Premier League, Premier Sports
The 1988 FA Cup winners vs the 1988 League Cup winners. Yeah, a lots changed since - football really was shit back then.

19.45 Ipswich Town v Arsenal, Carling Cup Semi Final 1st Leg, Sky Sports 1/HD1
Could be a long week for Ipswich fans. You can't really see Arsenal being on the receiving end of any kind of backlash from the Tractor Boys after their 7-0 drubbing to Chelsea in the FA Cup.

19.45 Hamilton v Celtic, SPL, Sky Sports 4/HD4
Bottom plays top with an inevitable result.

20.00 Inter v Genoa, Coppa Italia Round of 16, ESPN/ESPN HD
The holders' probably only realistic chance of glory this season. Genoa have the meanest defence in Serie A though so it won't be easy.

21.00 Barcelona v Real Betis, Copa Del Rey, Quarter Final 1st Leg, Sky Sports 3/HD3
Come on, admit it, you're getting a bit fed up of cup football aren't you. Barcelona have the added incentive of playing at home should they reach the final.

Thursday 13 January

16.15 Syria v Japan, AFC Asian Cup, British Eurosport 2
A double strike from Abdelrazaq Al Hussain against Saudi Arabia has seen Syria take the advantage in this tough group. Japan however were surprisingly held against Jordan (settle down now) - it could have been worse if not for Maya Yoshida's last minute equaliser.

19.00 Almeria v Deportivo La Coruna, Copa Del Rey Quarter Final 1st Leg, Sky Sports 2/HD2
Almeria have the far more pressing matter of staying up to attend to than the Cup, while Depor - as usual - are just floating around mid-table. Almeria to go through then.

20.00 Juventus v Catania, Coppa Italia Round of 16, ESPN/ESPN HD
Juve haven't won the Coppa Italia since 1995 and will want to put in a good performance after being sunk by an Edison Cavani hat-trick against Napoli at the weekend.

21.00 Real Madrid v Atletico Madrid, Copa Del Rey Quarter Final 1st Leg, Sky Sports 3/HD3
This Madrid derby could well be the proverbial "wafer thin mint" of your feast of knockout football. Go on, it is only wafer thin.

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