This weekend signals the last round of fixtures for the 2009 calendar year. As the players are yearning for the Christmas break to earn some much needed rest and the managers and owners are filling out their transfer wish list for Papá Noel, Round 15 provides interesting if not necessarily marquee matches. The game of the week will be the last game of 2009 as Deportivo La Coruña hosts Valencia at El Riazor on Sunday night. La Liga will return on January 2, 2010, but until then, holiday in Marbella sounds like a perfect idea.
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.
Athletic Bilbao vs. Osasuna – 11:45 AM on DIRECTV channel 456
Sevilla vs. Getafe – 1:55 PM on GOL TV
Real Madrid vs. Real Zaragoza – 3:55 PM on GOL TV
Villarreal vs. Racing Santander – 10:45 AM on DIRECTV channel 456
Málaga vs. Mallorca – 10:45 AM on DIRECTV channel 457
Espanyol vs. Almería – 10:55 AM on ESPN Deportes/ESPN 360
Tenerife vs. Atlético Madrid – 12:55 PM on GOL TV
Deportivo La Coruña vs. Valencia – 2:55 PM on ESPN Deportes/ESPN 360
Unfortunately, the Real Valladolid – Sporting Gijón match will not be shown on US TV. Also, the Xerez – Barcelona match that would have been played this weekend was already played two weeks ago because of Barcelona’s participation in the FIFA Club World Cup. Barcelona won 0-2 in a struggle against the cellar-dwellers from Jerez de la Frontera.
FIFA Club World Cup
As expected, the Copa Libertadores winner will matchup with the winner of the UEFA Champions League in the final of the FIFA Club World Cup. After early scares from Pohang Steelers and Atlante, the class of the two finalists eventually bloomed, although for Estudiantes, the lack of discipline displayed by Pohang Steelers certainly helped their cause. Pep Guardiola will hope to continue his winning streak as manager of FC Barcelona: five competitions entered and five competitions won to this point. Club champions of the world will put a nice bow to fully close out the accomplishments of the 2008-2009 FC Barcelona team.
FC Barcelona vs. Estudiantes de La Plata – Saturday, December 19 at 10:55 AM on Fox Sports en Español (For those who do not receive Fox Sports en Español, Fox Soccer Channel will air the final on delay at 9:00 PM on Saturday night)