Weekend Football Preview
March 9, 2012
Post created by Alex
The weekend of March 9th through March 11th holds some fantastic matches for fans of La Liga, Serie A and the EPL.
We’ll begin with an overview of the points on offer in England, where the title race is up for grabs between the two dominant Manchester clubs. Man. United will face off against Roy Hodgson’s West Brom, who have danger man Peter Odemwingie to thank for a recent surge in form. Early in the season, reported dissent within the camp forced Hodgson to hold private talks with the striker who has since kicked-on, offering evidence of his re-awakening in the form of a hat trick over Wolves and a pair of well taken goals against a much improved Sunderland side led by Martin O’Neil. United will have something to prove this weekend after a continuation of their struggles on the European stage, which saw the team suffering an unexpected defeated to Spanish side Athletic Bilbao in the Europa League.
Meanwhile, Manchester City will be eager to put their dismal performance in Europe in perspective as they turn their focus back to winning their first EPL title since 1968. Swansea is enjoying a fine acclimation to the rigors of life in the Premier League but a team featuring the world class talents of David Silva, Sergio Aguero, Edin Dzeko et all will surely be play favorites in Sunday’s matchup between the first place holders and the Wales based Barca-lit.
Bolton VS QPR will be a hard fought game as it is a must win for both of the relegation threatened sides. QPR have a perceived advantage having invested heavily in very accomplished players like Cisse and Zamora in the January transfer window. Bolton will be hopeful star forward and team captain Kevin Davies is able to shake off a knee injury and lead the line. Fans of Bolton will also be buoyed by the form of Arsenal loanee Miyaichi, who’se pace and trickery very nearly paid off with a late goal against Manchester City last week.
Another relegation ‘six-pointer,’ will take place between Wolves and Blackburn, the teams are eager to close a rather sizable gap between themselves and safety with both picking up a paltry 22 points so far this season. Furthermore, because each of the current managers have been promoted from second-in-command, there is a sense that some pride is at stake in this match-up.
In Serie A, Inter Milan occupy an unfamiliar spot in mid-table, with only a three point advantage over Friday’s opponents Chievo. With one draw the highlight from their last 5 competitions, Inter will be desperate to come away with a confidence boosting win. By comparison, Chievo are climbing the table, with two wins and a draw in their last three games.
Juventus will be hoping to beat struggling Genoa and return to the top of the table, but holders AC Milan face 18th place Lecce, who shouldn’t pose much of a threat to the team seen by many as favorites to win the title.
In La Liga, title holders Barcelona are ten points off the pace of Real Madrid who occupy top spot, but the race for champions leagues spots are tight, with Levante and Malaga (fourth and sixth, respectively) just one point off one another and facing off on Saturday.
Althetic Bilboa, winners against Manchester United in the mid-week Europa league clash mentioned above, hold only a two point advantage over Sunday’s opponents Osasuna and will be looking to stake their claim to a Champions league spot. Bilboa will be favorites based on form, with just one loss and one draw blemishing their otherwise stellar record in the last five matches.