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USMNT weekend viewing guide: Playoffs and Returns

MLS Playoff action starts and several players have returned from injury across the ocean

CA Osasuna v Valencia CF - LaLiga Santander Photo by Ion Alcoba/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

We’re making a slight modification to the viewing guide over the next month or so as we’ll try to expand coverage a bit to include matches outside of the Top Five and MLS where there are streaming options available that allow you to watch a match of a player who seems like they have a solid chance to make the World Cup roster, you can call it the Josh Sargent exception (though perhaps more importantly it applies to a couple goalkeepers as well). In addition this weekend in Europe we have some players returning to health and stateside we have the MLS playoffs starting this weekend with two matches a piece Saturday through Monday. It should be a full weekend so let’s get to it.


Strasbourg v Lille - 3p on beIN Sports

Timothy Weah is part of the crowd of USMNT players recently returned from long injury layoff, making his first appearance of the season off the bench last weekend for Lille in the teams 1-0 win over Lens. Weah looked sharp in his return to the field though he did miss a great opportunity to score in his return as well. The win moved Lille into seventh place, though still four points out of Europa Conference League qualification. It was a solid result against a Lens side that is now in fourth place, five points ahead of Lille.


Valencia v Elche - 10:15a on ESPN Deportes and ESPN+

Yunus Musah also returned from injury last weekend to get 28’ off the bench as Valencia secured a 2-1 win in their midtable clash with Osasuana. The club face an Elche side this weekend that has managed just two points through eight matches and currently sit solidly at the bottom of the table. Valencia are in seventh place, just three points back of Atletico Madrid for fourth and Champions League qualification though it looks like it’s already a two horse race for the La Liga title with Barcelona and Real Madrid tied on 22 points, five points ahead of the next closest competitor.

Other notes:

  • Chris Richards has yet to return from injury with reports that he has yet to return to group training. Crystal Palace face Leicester at 7:30a on USA Network
  • The New York Red Bulls and Cincinnati kick off the MLS Playoffs at Noon on UniMas and TUDN. Aaron Long and John Tolkien will start for the Red Bulls while Brandon Vasquez will lead the attack for Cincinnati.
  • Walker Zimermann and Nashville SC travel to Los Angeles to take on the Galaxy at 3p on Univision and TUDN.

Streaming overseas:

  • Timothy Chandler’s Eintracht Frankfurt face Bayer Leverkusen at 9:30a on ESPN+.
  • Kevin Paredes and Wolfsburg host Joe Scally and Borussia Monchengladbach at 9:30a on ESPN+.
  • Pellegrino Matarazzo has been dismissed from Stuttgart so we won’t be tracking the club moving forward. They do face Bochum at 9:30a on ESPN+ this weekend.

Antonee Robinson also returned to the field last weekend but Fulham fell to West Ham 3-1. Robinson, Ream and Fulham now face aOther Bournemouth side whose only loses have come to Man City, Arsenal, and Liverpool this season. The match will be at 10a on Peacock.

  • Weston McKennie and Juventus continue to flounder, their most recent dissapointing result being a 2-0 loss to Josh Cohen and Maccabi Haifa in Champions League play midweek with McKennie getting pulled at half-time. Juventus will now face Torino at Noon on Paramount+.
  • Some of that bonus Championship action as Josh Sargent’s Norwich side will face Watford at 2:45p on ESPN+.


Leeds United v Arsenal - 9a on Peacock

Jesse Marsch, Tyler Adams, and Brendon Aaronson need to get things back on track as they have just two points from their past five matches but they’ll have their work cut out for them as they face first place Arsenal. Leeds have fallen to fourteenth in the league standings just three points out of the relegation zone. It’s not a terrible position for a team that narrowly avoided relegation last season but it is a bit disappointing after their hot start to the season that included a 3-0 win over Chelsea. Unfortunately, that defeat of Chelsea was the sides last real positive result.

Other notes:

  • Austin FC host Real Salt Lake in a first round playoff matchup at 3p on ABC and ESPN Deportes.
  • Djordje Mihailovic and Montreal take on Orlando City SC at 8p on ESPN.

Streaming overseas:

  • Celta Vigo and Luca de la Torre face Real Sociedad at 8a on ESPN+.
  • Christian Pulisic got the start and scored a nice goal last weekend but didn’t see time off the bench midweek for Chelsea. They face Aston Villa at 9a on Peacock.
  • Erik Palmer Brown and Troyes face Ajacio at 9a on beIN Sports.
  • Jordan Pefok and Bundeslgia leading Union Berlin take on a Borussia Dortmund side that scored in the dying minutes to draw with Bayern Munich last weekend. Giovanni Reyna made his return from injury on Tuesday, playing 30 sharp minutes in BVB’s 1-1 draw with Sevilla.
  • Sergino Dest is looking to break his way back into the starting lineup for an AC Milan team that face Hellas Verona at 2:45p on Paramount+. Dest came on as a first half substitute in Milan’s 2-0 loss to Chelsea with his team already down by two and playing with 10 men.


Monday bonus action:

What will you be watching this weekend? Let us know in the comments section below.