Eighty games in the books, a cool 300 to go! The 81st and 90th look like the best this weekend with ESPN2 back with Everton visiting a loud White Hart Lane for the early Saturday kickoff. Can Spurs provide 10 additional men to join superstar Gareth Bale? And the one I won’t miss is the Sunday tea time match up in the Eastlands with Arsenal visiting their old friend Adebayor in this battle for second in the EPL. As The Gaffer mentioned previously this week, the early Sunday match is, for the first time, moved from FS+ to the more widely subscribed FSC. Just because of Man Utd? A trend of things to come?
****: Must-see. Cancel all other activities. Do not even DVR as even in America you might hear the score!
***: Strong match; worth watching live; DVR a must if you can’t see live
**: Flip through quickly to see the goals, red cards, injuries, and perhaps watch the last 5 minutes + injury time if close
*: Only if you’re a die-hard
Matches shown in chronological order:
Saturday, October 23 (all times EDT)
*** Tottenham v Everton, 7:45 am, ESPN2/ESPND & espn3.com
Did the derby get the Toffees back to full end-of-season form or was it a one-off? Spurs were exposed in all kinds of ways by the cupholders in Milan, showing they’re still new to top-notch European football. Wouldn’t you want to build a team around Bale, though?
** Chelsea v Wolverhampton, 10 am, FSC/FD (full game repeat at 7 pm & condensed game at 9 pm)
The goals may flow.
** Sunderland v Aston Villa, 10 am, FS+ & foxsoccer.tv
** West Brom v Fulham, 10 am, foxsoccer.tv & 5 pm (delayed) FSC
** Birmingham v Blackpool, 10 am, foxsoccer.tv & 6 pm (delayed) FS+
These two could still end up in the relegation battle, given the strengths of the league, so these are important 3 points.
* Wigan v Bolton, 10 am, foxsoccer.tv & Sunday 11 am (delayed) FS+
Fox yet again picks the right match to delay til Sunday.
** West Ham v Newcastle, 12:30 pm, FSC/FD
Two storied teams in the Saturday late match.
Sunday, October 24
*** Stoke v Man Utd, 8:30 am, FSC (full game repeat at 7 pm & condensed game at 9 pm)
The Brittania is never an easy place to visit, and the media will be focused on this one. Will Rooney play again for Ferguson? What a let-down after being up 2-nil against WBA last week.
** Liverpool v Blackburn, 10 am, foxsoccer.tv & 5 pm (delayed) FSC
A game Hodgson simply has to win.
**** Man City v Arsenal, 11 am, FSC/FD
The best is saved for last this week. We all remember this fixture from last year with Adebayor’s length-of-the-pitch run and demonstration in front of the visiting Arsenal fans. Will he get the start up front again? Arsenal was in form mid-week in the Champions League, but have already dropped 10 points in the league and find themselves 5 points adrift after 8 matches, and have already lost to Chelsea. Fabregas looks ready to return to EPL action in this must-see match.