One hundred matches to go! (103 with a few make-ups on March 9 and April 20.) And can anyone remember such a wide open season, with great races for the title, for Europe, for relegation? Most of these 100 are going to be fascinating! Can’t wait til May Day with United’s visit to the Emirates. (And they could meet before that, of course, in both the FA Cup and Champions League!!) You all know the 4-star match this weekend, of course, and then we have 8 more stars for the Gunners visit to the Camp Nou and Milan’s return leg at White Hart Lane mid-week. Enjoy the matches!!
***: 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, March 5 (all times EST)
*** Birmingham v West Brom, 7:45 am, ESPN2/ESPND & espn3.com [Jones]
Birmingham’s season already made with the trophy hoisted at Wembley; they could return a second time! Just need a few more points to ensure not being dragged down into the relegation scrap. And this local derby would be a great time to get 3.
*** Arsenal v Sunderland, 10 am, FSC/FD [Taylor]
** Newcastle v Everton, 10 am, FS+ & foxsoccer.tv [Webb]
* Fulham v Blackburn, 10 am, foxsoccer.tv & noon (delayed) FS+ [Clattenburg]
*** Bolton v Aston Villa, 10 am, foxsoccer.tv & 5 pm (delayed) FSC [Friend]
** West Ham v Stoke, 10 am, foxsoccer.tv & Sunday 11 am (delayed) FS+ [Marriner]
I think this is a better match than the Fulham-Blackburn one and am surprised, after what the Hammers did to Liverpool last weekend, that Fox is delaying this one all the way til Sunday.
** Man City v Wigan, 12:30 pm, FSC/FD [Attwell]
Sunday, March 6
**** Liverpool v Man Utd, 8:30 am, FSC/FD [Dowd]
Two angry sides from last week’s losses. Liverpool were badly outplayed at Upton Park, while United feel they were at the wrong end of numerous calls. Of course, Rooney should not have even been on the pitch at the Bridge, so hard for me to accept Sir Alex’s complaints. I don’t think we’ll be seeing Messrs Clattenburg or Atkinson refereeing a key United or Chelsea match. Berbatov obviously comes back into the side after what he did to Liverpool at Old Trafford, but it’s Suarez salivating about no Vidic, no Ferdinand for this one. What was Vidic thinking, taking that ridiculous second yellow in injury time?
*** Wolverhampton v Tottenham, 11 am, FSC/FD [Halsey]
This will not be an easy fixture for the visitors, with Wolves still desperate for points.
Monday, March 7
*** Blackpool v Chelsea, 3 pm, ESPN2/ESPND & espn3.com [Dean]
And talk about a difficult place to visit. As Spurs found out, you can have a historic win one night, then have to go to the seaside and battle the tough Tangerines in your next match.
Tuesday, March 8
**** Barcelona (1) v Arsenal (2), Champions League leg 2, 2:45 pm, FSC/FD
A pretty perfect halftime scoreline entering this one. A shame that one of these sides has to be knocked out so early as each would be fun to see in the quarterfinals.
Wednesday, March 9
**** Tottenham (1) v AC Milan (0), Champions League leg 2, 2:45 pm, FSC/FD
Bale still struggling to get fit. Milan are still confident they can score an away goal or two and advance.
** Everton v Birmingham, 3 pm, foxsoccer.tv & 5 pm (delayed) FS+ [Walton]
Very disappointing season for the Toffees.