Thursday, September 8, 2011

Weekend TV Preview: 10-11 September 2011

Saturday 10 September

12.30 Dundee United v Rangers, SPL, ESPN/ESPN HD
Nine goals scored and none conceded for Rangers in their last four SPL games. They lead the table on goal difference ahead of Motherwell and must be looking forward to this trip to Tannadice. United have only won two of their last ten at home to Rangers.
15.45 Bangor City v The New Saints, Welsh Premier League, S4C
No-one ever talks about The Old Saints, do they? Were they ditched in favour of an ill-advised revamp like they did with The Avengers in the 1970's? Do The New Saints play like a load of Gareth Hunts? Answers to the usual address, please...
17.00 Real Sociedad v Barcelona, La Liga, Sky Sports 4/HD4
Only one win for Sociedad over Barcelona in their last ten meetings, but it happened on the last time both teams faced each other in April. The Basques, however, won't fancy their chances of securing back-to-back wins against Barca following the latter's 6-0 win over Villareal in Week 1.
17.15 Mansfield Town v Newport County, Blue Square Premier League, Premier Sports
Just one win from seven so far indicates the direction of travel for lowly Newport. A trip to fourth-placed Mansfield Town will only serve to sustain their agony.
17.20 Coventry City v Derby County, Championship, Sky Sports 2/HD2
Things are looking pretty bleak for Andy Thorn and his Sky Blues. Yet to score at home, yet to win anywhere and now facing a Derby side that’s won four of their last five whilst also having the meanest defence in the league. City fans - it’s either this or Rugby World Cup highlights for you this evening: your choice.
17.30 Bolton v Man Utd, Premier League, ESPN/ESPN HD
Assuming that you’re not going to be watching the semi finals of the Beach Soccer World Cup on Eurosport 2, here’s a chance to witness United’s latest impressive display for those nice people at the Singapore Stock Exchange.
19.00 Real Madrid v Getafe, La Liga, Sky Sports 4/HD4
Cristiano Ronaldo has scored seven goals in his last three games against Getafe. Real as a whole have only scored eleven. Another in-no-way-subtle betting tip from your friends at Football Fairground.
19.45 Cesena v Napoli, Serie A, ESPN/ESPN HD
Napoli did the double over Cesena last season - in fact to the best of our knowledge, Cesena have never beaten Napoli full stop. Hardly the best of season openers for The Seahorses, but that’s what you get with player strikes.
21.00 Valencia v Atletico Madrid, La Liga, Sky Sports 4/HD4
Valencia were made to work for their first three points of the season last week. Against Racing Santander, they went 1-0 up, then 3-1 behind, then won the match 4-3. Two of their latter three goals were scored in the last two minutes of normal time, too. Could be hi-jinks here...
22.00 Santos v Cruzeiro, Brazilian Serie A, Premier Sports
13th v 12th. Santos were floundering badly but are now on an unbeaten run of five games. A win for Cruzeiro, however, will see them go up to 9th in the table.

Sunday 11 September

11.30 Juventus v Parma, Serie A, ESPN/ESPN HD
Both teams pulled up a bit short last season and will be looking to find a little extra in the tank to push on for a Europa League spot this time. Parma have won the last three games between these two and should be a good bet for an away win.
13.30 Norwich City v West Brom, Premier League, Sky Sports 1/HD1
It’s all aboard the Roy Hodgson Managerial Indifference Bandwagon once again and this time it’s Norwich’s turn to bang another nail in the coffin of the former Fulham manager. At least The Baggies can leap half way up the Premier League table if they do win.
16.00 Fulham v Blackburn Rovers, Premier League, Sky Sports 1/HD1
Both teams are in the bottom five, but Fulham at least know they can play better by virtue of their Europa League form of the past couple of months. All they have to do now is pretend Blackburn are from some far-flung exotic corner of the continent and they’ll be well away.
16.30 VFL Wolfsburg v FC Schalke, Bundesliga, ESPN/ESPN HD
The decision by Wolfsburg coach Felix Magath to fine two of his attackers for being “lazy runners” in their 4-1 defeat to Borussia Mönchengladbach really focused the minds of his squad. The resulting 3-0 defeat to Frieburg last Saturday just goes to show that if you’re in a really big hole, all you need is a bigger shovel.
19.45 Palermo v Inter Milan, Serie A, ESPN/ESPN HD
Despite the Serie A strikes, Palermo have already begun their season (albeit disappointingly) with a defeat to FC Thun in the Europa League. Inter, on the other hand, travel to Trabzonspor next week, for which this match should be the ideal preparation.
20.00 Espanyol v Athletic Bilbao, La Liga, Sky Sports 2/HD2
Bilbao finished a great season by finishing sixth in 2010/11 - just two places above Espanyol. Matches between these two are very difficult to predict with the historical head-to-heads reading 14 wins to Espanyol, 10 to Bilbao and 12 draws.
20.00 Fluminense v Corinthians, Brazilian Serie A, Premier Sports
It’s sixth v third but the former are on much better form at the moment. They’ll need to keep it up if they’re to retain their league title from last season.

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