5 to Watch This Weekend
Alejandro Bedoya and Michael Bradley Both on TV
There are plenty of good games to watch over the next few days, with Alejandro Bedoya starring for Nantes, Michael Bradley facing Fiorentina, and the 18th MLS Cup kicking off in Kansas City.
December 06, 2013
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Olympique Marseilles vs. Nantes
2:30 p.m. (all times Eastern)
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Alejandro Bedoya scored again against Valenciennes on Tuesday. Bedoya now has three goals in all competitions for Nantes, and is further cementing his position in the lineup, playing at least 80 minutes in five of the team's last six games. Olympique Marseilles jumped over Nantes in the standings after two losses to finish November, so this is a game where Nantes can right the ship and get back into fourth place.
Sunderland vs. Tottenham
Jozy Altidore finally scored his first league goal for Sunderland on Wednesday, and it was against Chelsea of all teams. Altidore should have an extra burst of confidence going up against the see-sawing Spurs But even if he does score again, it's going to take more than two performances to declare him as being on track. This could be a good start though, as the Spurs are low-scoring themselves and may allow the game to open up a little bit as they try to push against the last place Black Cats.
Sporting Kansas City vs. Real Salt Lake
The Arctic weather in Kansas City—forecasters are predicting a high of 21 degrees—will likely play a role in the 18th MLS Cup, with both Sporting Kansas City and Real Salt Lake seeking their second championships. Graham Zusi and Kyle Beckerman will lead the clash of American midfielders while Matt Besler and Nick Rimando shore up the defenses on either side. For Robbie Findley, the game is a sweet opportunity for vindication after a tumultuous and disappointing three-year run in England.
Roma vs. Fiorentina
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If you're ready to wake up at the crack of dawn on a Sunday morning, this will be the game to get your day going. Roma pulled off another improbable result last week to remain unbeaten—Bayern Munich is the only other club in a major European league which can make the same claim. Michael Bradley continues to be a 90-minute player for the Romans as they struggle with injury woes, and it will be a New Jersey showdown as he squares off against Giuseppe Rossi.
Arsenal vs. Everton
Tim Howard gave an MVP-quality performance against Manchester United on Wednesday, stopping six shots against his former team in Everton's 1-0 win. Going to the Emirates on Sunday to face Arsenal won't be an easy task, but with Howard and the Toffees on a roll, the squad must feel confident it can pull off a second straight upset.
NOT A GAME, BUT...
World Cup: World Cup Draw
(11:30 a.m., Friday, ESPN2)— The long-awaited World Cup draw finally happens Friday morning, live from Brazil. All the speculation of Groups of Death, lucky draws, and doomed-from-the-get-go scenarios will finally come to a head as the the eight groups are selected one team at a time. The best potential draw for the U.S.? Switzerland, Algeria, and Greece. The worst? Any of the remaining seeded teams, Ivory Coast, and any of the remaining teams from Pot 4.
So what are you watching this week? Let us know in comments section below.
Christopher McCollum is a New York City-based writer and an ASN contributor.