Sunday, September 4, 2011

Midweek TV Preview 5 - 8 September 2011

Monday 5 September

19.00 England U21 v Israel U21, International Friendly, ESPN / ESPN HD
England got their European Championship qualification off to a flier with a 6-0 spanking of Azerbaijan. Next up, a friendly against the tournament hosts, Israel. Given how precious these youngster are to their managers, expect a few changes at Oakwell. Also, "Freedom For Palestine!" banners will be confiscated.
19:45 Charlton Athletic v Sheffield Wednesday, League 1, Sky Sports 1 / HD1
Two straight wins has settled the nerves at Hillsborough and taken a modicum of pressure off the ever-popular Wednesday coach, Gary Megson. A real feather in the cap would be three points against unbeaten Charlton at The Valley.

Tuesday 6 September

16.00 Russia v Republic of Ireland, Euro 2012 Qualifier, Sky Sports 2 / HD2
Sky Sports continue their reluctant coverage of the European qualifiers. The satellite dish retailer knows its bread is buttered firmly on the Premier/Champions League side so tends to scale back on the hoopla for these games. Some may argue that that is a good thing. Big game, this one, between the top two. A chance for Russia to get some breathing space from Ireland or a chance for Ireland to top the group ahead of the penultimate round of fixtures in October.
19.15 Denmark v Norway, Euro 2012 Qualifier, ESPN / ESPN HD
A tasty Scando derby for contrary types like me. Norway are second, level on points with Portugal. Their opponents are three points behind. Norway have been slowly climbing up the rankings and are in a good place to return to a major tournament, albeit via a play-off if need be.
19.30 Estonia v Northern Ireland, Euro 2012 Qualifier, Sky Sports 3 / HD3
Marko Pantelic's winner at Windsor Park has left Northern Ireland with it all to do, but a win against fourth-placed Estonia could give them hope. Who knows with this team, they're capable of anything...
20.00 Scotland v Lithuania, Euro 2012 Qualifier, Sky Sports 2 / HD2
A controversial penalty given by Kevin Blom on the stroke of full time has given the Scottish media the chance of prolonging the delusion of their situation a little further. The truth is that Scottish football is not what it was and they are not going to Poland or Ukraine because they are not good enough. Best thing is to give Lithuania a good hiding and locate the drawing board.
20.00 England v Wales, Euro 2012 Qualifier, ITV1 / ITV HD
A nice British derby with Wales' impressive win against Montenegro giving nervous England fans pause. Could be a famous or infamous night at Wembley, depending on which end of the Severn Bridge you live.

Thursday 8 September

20.30 Juventus v Notts County, Friendly, ESPN / ESPN HD
Juve open their new stadium with a game against a club that sorted them out for kits back in the day. Pure class.
23.10 Velez Sarsfield v Argentinos Juniors, Copa Sudamericana, Premier Sports
Two domestic rivals meet in the second leg of a pan-continental competition. It's 0-0 from the first leg. Sarsfield are the better league side so will be favorites to win the tie.

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