The kickoff of the European seasons is (finally) just around the corner with the English Championship kicking off this weekend, the German Supercup taking place Saturday, the EPL and Ligue 1 getting underway next weekend, and the Bundesliga and La Liga starting up the following weekend. There’s a limited amount of content this weekend, but there are a few chances to catch some USMNT players in action.
Due in part to the MLS All-Star game on Wednesday, there are no major network games for viewing on Friday unless you want to check out some USL action on ESPN+ or Bundesliga 2 games on Fox Soccer Match Pass. If you don’t have either service and don’t want to drop any cash, you can check out some NWSL action as the North Carolina Courage take on the Washington Spirit at 7pm for free on Yahoo Sports. Unfortunately, you’ll miss out on Abby Dahlkemper, Crystal Dunn, Samantha Mewis, and Jessica McDonald for the Courage and Rose Lavelle and Mallory Pugh for the Spirit due to the United States Women’s National Team starting their five game Victory Tour on Saturday.
Atlanta United v LA Galaxy - 5p on Fox
It’s another match-up of Atlanta vs LA when Atlanta United face the LA Galaxy on Saturday evening. Things didn’t end so well for Atlanta last weekend as they fell to Los Angeles Football Club 4-3. This weekend, they’ll be at home where they’ve been much better this season, having suffered just one loss in twelve games. Emerson Hyndman, Darlington Nagbe, Miles Robinson, and Brad Guzan have all been seeing time for Atlanta, who currently sit at second place in the Eastern Conference.
The LA Galaxy are also coming off a loss, a 4-0 drubbing at the hands of the Portland Timbers, and currently sit at third place in the Western Conference. Joe Corona and Julian Araujo have both been seeing time for the Galaxy recently. The team will have their hands full on the road and without the services of Efrain Alvarez, Diego Polenta, and Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who are out due to red cards or yellow card accumulation.
- Fabian Johnson and Borussia Mönchengladbach will face Christian Pulisic and Chelsea in a friendly at 11a on ESPN2. Pulisic will be looking to build on his two goal performance from Wednesday as the team heads towards their season opener next weekend.
- Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich meet at 2:30p on Fox in the German Supercup. It’s the preseason matchup of last years DFB Pokal winners and the second place Bundesliga team (due to Bayern winning both the DFB Pokal and the Bundesliga last season). It seems unlikely we’ll see either Gio Reyna or Chris Richards make the game day squad for this one but you better believe we’ll be checking.
- The USWNT start their victory tour Saturday night when they face Ireland at 10p on ESPN2. The roster is the same as the 23 players who won the World Cup this Summer and the results seem likely to follow suit.
D.C. United v Philadelphia Union - 7:30p on FS1
Two of the Eastern Conferences top three teams face off Sunday when D.C. United host the conference leading Philadelphia Union. D.C. United are coming off a scoreless draw with the Chicago Fire, but can pull level with the Union in the standings with a win at home Sunday. D.C. United will be without the services of Russell Canouse, who is out for the next several weeks due to a collapsed lung. This could mean additional playing time for Chris Durkin, who would join Paul Arriola, Bill Hamid, and Steven Birnbaum on the field.
The Philadelphia Union have been a surprise as conference leaders this season, but they are coming off a 4-0 loss to the Montreal Impact and they have been on a bit of a roller coaster rider recently. It was their second loss by that scoreline in the last three games, with a 2-0 win over the Chicago Fire sandwiched between them. The Union are all aboard the youth train and have a number of potential or fringe USMNT players, including Auston Trusty (20), Matthew Real (20), Brendan Aaronson (18), Anthony Fontana (19), Alejandro Bedoya, and Andrew Wooten.
- Minnesota United and the Portland Timbers face off at 4p on ESPN. Miguel Ibarra and Ike Opara will take the field for Minnesota, while Jeremy Ebobisse and Jorge Villafana will see time for Portland.
- The Seattle Sounders will take on Sporting Kansas City at 10p on FS1. 16-year-old Danny Leyva has been making the case for more time alongside Jordan Morris and Cristian Roldan in the Sounders lineup, while Matt Besler and Graham Zusi are occasionally joined by Gedion Zelalem and Gianluca Busio for Kansas City. The Sounders currently sit in second place in the Western Conference while Kansas City is on the outside looking in on the playoff race.