IT’S OVER. NO MORE INTERNATIONAL FOOTBALL UNTIL MARCH. I say that, there is actually more on Tuesday but I don’t mind so much on a Tuesday. It’s these club-football-less weekends I can’t hack. Yes, I know there was League One and Two but it’s not the same is it? So, let’s get out this International hangover, a sip of water here and a bacon butty there, and before you know it that headache will be gone.
Tuesday 14th November
Right, let’s get this out the way. The final World Cup playoff second leg is between Republic of Ireland and Denmark, after the two sides played out an awful 0-0 draw in Denmark on Saturday night. It’s winner takes all, and at least that is interesting. If pointless friendlies are more your thing, Wales vs Panama is right up your street That’s at 7.45pm on BBC Two Wales. England vs Brazil is a bit more glamorous, yet still pointless, and that’s on ITV from 8pm. Germany vs France is another heavyweight contest, that’s on BT Sport at 7.45pm
Wednesday 15th November
Grit your teeth. FA Cup 1st round replay action has never been so gratefully received, as Tranmere Rovers host Peterborough United. That’s on BT Sport 1 at 7.45pm. It’s a potential upset though Tranmere aren’t as dominant as you’d expect in the National League. I guess you could watch Crusaders vs Linfield in the Northern Ireland League Cup on the BBC Red Button if you’re really against watching the FA Cup. That’s also at 7.45pm
Thursday 16th November
Do you often find yourself awake at 2.15am on a Thursday morning? If so, I have great news. Peru vs New Zealand is on Premier Sports. This one was 0-0 in the first leg too, so things can only get better. If you’r after football at a more sociable time, BT Sport have opted for Billericay Town vs Leatherhead in an FA Cup 1st round replay. Billericay have Paul Konchesky, Jermaine Pennant and Jamie O’Hara – in other words, they probably shouldn’t be in the Isthmian League Premier Division, and the odds are they won’t be for long. That’s as good as it gets I’m afraid but it’s something.
Friday 17th November
Oh my, I’ve never been so pleased to watch Preston vs Bolton. I think that’s called taking advantage of desperation. I’ll watch it and I will enjoy it. If you prefer not to watch a Lancashire derby, Stuttgart vs Dortmund is on BT Sport 2 at 7.30pm, or Amiens vs Monaco on BT Sport 3 is your French option.
Saturday 18th November
Hubba hubba, it’s the North London derby. Arsenal vs Tottenham is usually a feisty affair and I always find it incredible how Arsenal manage to weasel out of losing this game, I’m talking Kieran Gibbs forcing an equaliser a few years ago, that sort of thing. On the face of it, Spurs are very much a club on the up, and Arsenal are very much clinging onto their “top club” status by their fingertips. That’s at 12.30pm, which is also the same time as Ross County vs Celtic. Either way, that should set you up for the 3pm games. Roma vs Lazio is another feisty derby, that one will be joined in progress at 5pm on BT Sport 3. BT’s main event is the Premier League clash between Man Utd and Newcastle at 5.30pm. Rafa Benitez can expect a hostile reception due to his Liverpool connections, but it’ll be interesting to see how Rafa sets up against Mourinho. Fulham vs Derby is the Championship offering on Sky at the same time. It really is derby day, as the evening’s entertainment is Atletico Madrid vs Real Madrid. Cancel all plans.
Sunday 19th November
Make your plans for Sunday. There is no 1.30pm Premier League game, instead we’ve got Leeds vs Middlesbrough in the Championship at 1.15pm. You might think that Sky have done that to build up to a big game at 4pm, but no, it’s Watford vs West Ham. At least it’s David Moyes’ debut and we can see Sky focus on his battered face for 90 mins. If you want to fill the gap before 4pm, Sampdoria vs Juventus is on at 2pm, or Zwolle vs PSV at 1.30pm. Into the evening we’ve got Inter Milan vs Atalanta on BT at 7.45pm or Bordeaux vs Marseille at 8pm. Not a vintage Sunday.
Monday 20th November
I often think Sky are trolling us, knowing that after two weeks of nothing we’ll watch anything. Brighton vs Stoke very much falls into that category. Bloody hell. Monday Night Football was not invented for this reason.
At least club football is back, but stick with it because next week the Champions League is back and everything is great again. There’s no more breaks, so ease yourself into the upcoming football fest. Toodles for now.