Hurricane Clásico passed through the shores of Spain with a FC Barcelona win, and now normalcy can somewhat return to La Liga. The two most important matches in terms of the championship race are 5th place Deportivo La Coruña vs. league leaders FC Barcelona and 8th place Athletic Bilbao vs. 4th place Valencia. The most intriguing game, however, could be the Villarreal – Getafe matchup on Sunday. Villarreal’s rise from the dead hit a snag with a 0-1 loss at El Molinón vs. Sporting Gijón last weekend, and their possible return to their seemingly patented European place continues versus a 9th place Getafe club that has been inconsistent all season, with surprising wins against Valencia and Athletic Bilbao but bad losses against Osasuna and Real Zaragoza.
The times listed are Eastern Standard Time (EST) and include the pregame pleasantries, although sometimes the matches on the DIRECTV La Liga specific channels may not go to match coverage until right before kickoff.
Xerez vs. Atlético Madrid – 11:55 AM on ESPN 360/ESPN Deportes
Sevilla vs. Real Valladolid – 11:55 AM on GOL TV
Real Madrid vs. Almería – 1:55 PM on GOL TV
Deportivo La Coruña vs. Barcelona – 3:55 PM on ESPN 360/ESPN Deportes
Espanyol vs. Racing Santander – 10:45 AM on DIRECTV channel 458
Mallorca vs. Real Zaragoza – 10:45 AM on DIRECTV channel 457
Málaga vs. Osasuna – 10:45 AM on DIRECTV channel 456
Villarreal vs. Getafe – 12:55 PM on GOL TV
Athletic Bilbao vs. Valencia - 2:55 PM on ESPN2/ESPN 360/ESPN Deportes (on ESPN2, immediately preceding this match is the NCAA Women’s Soccer Championship (go Tar Heels, my alma mater), and depending if it is won in regulation or in extra time, the Athletic – Valencia may start later than expected on ESPN 2)
Unfortunately, the Tenerife vs. Sporting Gijón match will not be shown on US TV.
As always, if you are unable to see any of these matches this weekend, La Liga 360 shows the highlights from all these matches at 9:00 PM on GOL TV.
In the midweek, the final round of matches in the UEFA Champions League group stage occur, and of the four Spanish teams involved, only Sevilla knows where they are going come the knockout stage. Barcelona and Real Madrid control their own destiny: win and their in the next phase. If results do not go their way, however, they could amazingly be eliminated from the Champions League. Atlético Madrid also controls their own destiny in parachuting into the UEFA Europa League, but if they lose to FC Porto and APOEL Nicosia somehow defeats a probable second-string Chelsea side, Los Colchoneros will be out of Europe altogether.
UEFA Champions League
Atlético Madrid vs. FC Porto – Tuesday, December 8 at 2:30 PM on DIRECTV channel 466 (466-1 for HD)
Marseille vs. Real Madrid – Tuesday, December 8 at 2:30 PM on FSN and FSN HD/Fox Sports en Español
Dynamo Kyiv vs. FC Barcelona – Wednesday, December 9 at 2:30 PM on Setanta Sports and Fox Sports en Español
Sevilla vs. Rangers – Wednesday, December 9 at 2:30 PM on 464 (464-1 for HD)