I would ridicule Mario Balotelli’s inability to grasp the training bib, but, metaphorically, it’s a place I’ve been often. Why mess with a morsel of pure comedic mastery like “Mario Bibotelli?” Five soccer matches to watch this weekend, after the jump.
Chelsea vs. Manchester City: Hundreds of millions in petrodollars assembled this talent for your enjoy enjoyment. With Arsenal and Manchester United both looking feeble, the winner has a legit chance to win the Premier League. [Sun. Noon, Fox Soccer Channel]
Atletico Madrid vs. Real Madrid: The Madrid Derby. Real are one of the game’s elite teams. Atletico have enough talent to play like one occasionally. EA Sports was kind enough to simulate it for you. [Sat. 5pm, ESPN3.com]
West Brom vs. Arsenal: Arsenal can take initiative in the title race and move level with Manchester United. Cue the 90-minute tortured test of mettle. The Baggies are overmatched on paper, but they did pull off a 3-2 win at the Emirates in September. [Sat 11am, Fox Soccer Plus]
Tottenham vs. West Ham: West Ham normally raises their game for occasions. A London Derby constitutes an occasion. The teams are at opposite ends of the table, but this match may be crucial for both. Spurs are three points from staying in the Champions League next season. West Ham are trying to avoid relegation [Sat 8:45am, ESPN2]
Marseilles vs. Paris St. Germain: Le Classique. Both were eliminated from European competition at midweek. Both are still in with a shout for the French title and the Champions League places. [Sun. 4pm, Fox Soccer Plus]