Friday, September 23, 2011

Weekend TV Preview: 23 - 25 September 2011

Friday 23 September

19.45 Brighton & Hove Albion v Leeds United, Championship, Sky Sports 1/HD1/3D
Brighton boss Gus Poyet faces one of his old clubs at the Amex on Friday evening. The Uruguayan was assistant to Dennis Wise at Elland Road before heading back to Tottenham Hotspur to work under Juande Ramos.

Saturday 24 September

12.45 Dunfermline v Rangers, Scottish Premier League, Sky Sports 4/HD4
The Gers' last SPL outing was a 4-2 Old Firm derby win over Celtic, giving them the edge in the annual two-horse race in a league that we all know is dead behind the eyes. Steven Naismith was the two-goal hero last weekend.
12.45 Manchester City v Everton, Premier League, Sky Sports 2/HD2/3D
Both teams negotiated midweek visits from Midlands outfits in the Carling Cup this week. Goals from Mario Balotelli and some lad named Owen Hargreaves saw off Birmingham at the Etihad, while Everton needed extra time to beat West Brom.
17.15 Watford v Nottingham Forest, Championship, BBC2
Steve McClaren's Forest have lost three consecutive matches in the league, deepening the early question marks over his future at the club. They face a Watford side unbeaten in four under Sean Dyche, who came through the Forest youth ranks before signing professional terms with Chesterfield.
17.30 Stoke City v Manchester United, Premier League, ESPN/ESPN HD
Stoke's thumping by Sunderland last weekend leaves them in no shape to face goal-happy Manchester United, who sit atop the Premier League with maximum points and a remarkable goal difference after five matches.
19.45 Napoli v Fiorentina, Serie A, ESPN/ESPN HD
Napoli's customary defeat to Chievo took the shine off their fantastic win over AC Milan, in which Edinson Cavani scored a superb hat-trick. Wednesday's fixture saw Walter Mazzarri weaken his side, which he might not do again in a hurry.
21.00 Barcelona v Atletico Madrid, La Liga, Sky Sports 4/HD4
Barcelona had to settle for a draw at Valencia on Wednesday, a result that took their opponents top. Meanwhile, Atleti turned on the style with a 4-0 battering of Sporting.

Sunday 25 September

12.00 St Johnstone v Hearts, Scottish Premier League, ESPN/ESPN HD
Both these sides were victorious last Saturday, with St Johnstone defeating Motherwell by a handsome margin of three goals to nil, and Hearts winning 2-0 at home to St Mirren. Random fact: both benefited from own goals. But if you care about this match, you already knew that.
13.30 Cardiff City v Leicester City, Championship, Sky Sports 1/HD1
The Foxes look to leapfrong the Bluebirds as they visit South Wales on Sunday lunchtime. Cardiff have only lost once this season, falling to Brighton five games ago. Leicester's most recent Championship game was a win against the same opponents.
16.00 Queens Park Rangers v Aston Villa, Premier League, Sky Sports 1/HD1
All hail Alex McLeish, for Aston Villa are both unbeaten and boring, surely a record time for managers imposing their own style on a team. Get your money on a draw for this one; the visitors have drawn four out of five so far.

16.30 Werder Bremen v Hertha Berlin, Bundesliga, ESPN/ESPN HD
High-flying Werder face a Hertha side unbeaten since the opening day. Claudio Pizarro is leading the way from the top for the Bremen side, with three goals already to his name.
17.00 Granada v Osasuna, La Liga, Sky Sports 3/HD3
Granada returned to the top flight after 35 years and have found the going tough so far. A win over Villarreal was the only high point, the victory arriving courtesy of a single goal. Osasuna have fared better so far, losing only once.
19.00 Sporting v Racing, La Liga, Sky Sports 3/HD3
Sporting's hiding by Atletico was their fourth defeat out of four, leaving them rock bottom of La Liga with only two goals to rub together. Racing, meanwhile, picked up a point each from draws with Levante and Real Madrid.
19.45 Parma v Roma, Serie A, ESPN/ESPN HD
AS Roma are yet to win this season under Luis Enrique, drawing with struggling Inter and losing to Cagliari. Parma's only win so far came against Chievo.
21.00 Zaragoza v Malaga, La Liga, Sky Sports 3/HD3
Moneybags Malaga lost to Sevilla on opening day but have roared into life with wins over Granada, Mallorca and Athletic Bilbao. Santi Cazorla has three goals so far.

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