5214_isi_dempseyclint_xl_usmnt2213_1 Chris Putman/isiphotos.com
5 to Watch This Weekend

World Cup Roster Sprint Continues This Weekend

The major European leagues are drawing to a close, so dose up while you can. Meanwhile, we'll help you keep tabs on U.S. World Cup hopefuls as they try to secure spots on Jurgen Klinsmann's squad.
BY Christopher McCollum Posted
May 02, 2014
1:11 PM


Aston Villa vs. Hull City
10:00 a.m. (all times eastern)
NBC Sports Live Extra

Aston Villa’s string of poor performances continues, culminating in last week’s thrashing at the hands of Swansea City. Brad Guzan was hung out to dry by his defense on far too many occasions, but this weekend will give the American No. 2 a chance to bounce back from a visibly frustrating game.

Everton vs. Manchester City
12:30 p.m.
NBC Sports Live Extra

After imploding against Southampton last week, Tim Howard and Everton need a near miracle to catch Arsenal, which is currently four points ahead in fourth place. Everton has performed well against top teams this season and it will have to do so again against Manchester City in order to keep its Champions League hopes alive.

Seattle Sounders vs. Philadelphia Union
10:00 p.m.
MLS Live

Clint Dempsey is on a rampage. Maurice Edu is in beast mode. And the two are on a collision course this weekend as Philadelphia travels to Seattle for some Saturday night fun. Edu will need to bolster Philadelphia’s sub-par defense against the Green Machine—Dempsey, Obafemi Martins, and Lamar Neagle. The trio have combined for 14 goals and 10 assists this season, leading what has turned into the most dynamic offense in the league.


Toluca vs. Tijuana
1:00 p.m.

Tijuana and Toluca face off in the second leg of their opening round playoff series. On Thursday, Tijuana used Edgar Castillo, Joe Corona, and Herculez Gomez, but missed several opportunities to take the game, and series. But the Xolos did well to keep Toluca off the board, making Sunday’s game a winner-take-all situation. Tijuana can even advance on away goals in a tie-game situation, assuming somebody gets at least one.

Sporting Kansas City vs. Columbus Crew
4:00 p.m.
NBC Sports Live Extra

It’s an early battle for the top of the Eastern Conference, with Columbus paying a visit to Sporting Park. Four potential players for the World Cup camp should feature in the game, along with a handful of players for the future. While KC’s offense has been failing to consistently click so far, you get the impression that it’s only a matter of time before Graham Zusi and Benny Feilhaber get things moving. At the back, Matt Besler has been leading one of the best defenses in the league, surrendering less than one goal per game. On the other end of the field, Steve Clark has been living up to his billing as a tremendously athletic goalkeeper, making some stunning saves and working with Michael Parkhurst to keep his own 1.0 GAA intact.

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.

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