What to Watch for During Week 4

  1. Pep Guardiola vs. Jose Mourinho – Ever since the schedule came out, everyone has had this game circled.  The rivalry will be renewed this weekend in the Manchester Derby.  This game is being dubbed the most expensive game in football history as both teams will field teams that have cost the club almost 300 million pounds each with United above the 300 million pound mark.  This is an early season title showdown and one team will leave full of confidence and with a leg up on their crosstown rivals.  It should be a fantastic game especially with no Aguero for City and the debut of Claudio Bravo.
  2. Can Las Palmas maintain their perfect start? – No one saw this one coming. A small team from the Canary Islands is on top of the Spanish table. Las Palmas has scored 9 goals in their two games. That is the most so far this season. Marko Livaja, Kevin Prince Boateng, and Nabil El Zhar have all found resurgence on the Canary Islands. Only three teams have started the season with two wins out of two. Two of them are Barcelona and Real Madrid. The third is Las Palmas. The whole world will be cheering for them. Could this be the Spanish Leicester City? This weekend they travel to Andalusia to face off with Sevilla. This should be a tough test for them. It will be interesting to see if the magic can continue and they can be up near the top all season.
  3. How will RB Leipzig fare against the big boys? – Leipzig hosts Borussia Dortmund this weekend. Red Bull started this club in 2009 with the goal of reaching the top flight of German football as quickly as they could. They started in the fifth tier of German football and outspent their way to the Bundesliga. They have not made many friends on the way up, but they are in the top flight and that is all they are about. This weekend they face Borussia Dortmund and will look for their first big scalp in the top flight. Dortmund started well, but could make a statement this weekend.
  4. Can Genoa and Sampdoria keep up with Juventus? – Just like in Spain, three teams have started with the season with two wins out of two. One is the title favorite, Juventus. The other two are a bit more surprising, Genoa and Sampdoria. The question now becomes can they keep pace with Juventus or will they run away with the title? Roma and Napoli are already 2 points behind Juventus. This weekend Sampdoria travels to the capital as they face Roma. Genoa hosts Fiorentina.   And Napoli travels to Palermo. While many of you may say it is still really early, this race has a tendency to get blown wide open early and then Juventus coasts to the finish line.
  5. How will Lyon and PSG bounce back? – Both of these teams suffered their first defeat of the season before the international break. Lyon has been led by Alexandre Lacazette, who scored 6 goals in the first 3 games. They are now sitting in 4th place, one point behind the leaders. This race is far from over and might actually get interesting this season, but it will be interesting to see how they bounce back against Bordeaux. This is a new feeling for the rest of the French Ligue since PSG is not on top. They also suffered defeat last weekend at the hands of now leaders Monaco. Cavani has struggled to fill the big shoes left by Zlatan. They will need him to start scoring if they are to keep their Ligue 1 title.

5 Games to Watch This Weekend 

Manchester United vs. Manchester City – The Manchester Derby returns early tomorrow morning. This is going to be a must watch affair. The touchline might be a better watch as Jose and Pep renew their rivalry. Claudio Bravo should start for City. Sergio Aguero is out suspended. Is this Pogba’s break out game? Who steals the headlines?

My Pick – United 1, City 2: Goals by Ibrahimovic, Nolito, and Silva
Brad’s Pick – United 2, City 1: Goals by Ibrahimovic, Martial, and De Bruyne 

Celta Vigo vs. Atletico Madrid – Atletico Madrid is in search of their first win. They have drawn their first two games of the campaign against newly promoted teams. This weekend they face Celta Vigo who have struggled this season but looked good against Real Madrid last round. Look for Atleti to try and make a statement this round.

My Pick – Celta 1, Atletico 2: Goals by Aspas, Griezmann, and Niguez
Brad’s Pick – Celta 0, Atletico 2: Goals by Griezmann (2) 

RB Leipzig vs. Borussia Dortmund – Leipzig started their season with a draw against Hoffenheim. Dormtund started with a 2-1 win over Mainz. Both teams will look to stay unbeaten as they face off this season. Dortmund have their sights set on the title this season and have the players to do it. Andre Schurrle and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang have been outstanding. This game should be very open.

My Pick – Leipzig 1, Dortmund 3: Goals by Selke, Schurrle, and Aubameyang (2)
James’ Pick – Leipzig 0, Dortmund 0: Goals by
Brad’s Pick – Leipzig 1, Dortmund 2: Keita, Reus, and Schurrle

Genoa vs. Fiorentina – Leonardo Pavoletti and his two goals have led Genoa this season. They have won both of their opening games by the scoreline of 3-1. They now face off with Fiorentina who won their last game against Chievo. La Viola lost their opener with Juventus. Can Genoa keep up this perfect start?

My Pick – Genoa 2, Fiorentina 1: Goals by Pavoletti, Ocampos, and Kalinic
Brad’s Pick – Genoa 1, Fiorentina 0: Goals by Simeone 

Nice vs. Marseille – The battle for the southern French coastline takes place this weekend. Nice hosts their close rivals, Marseille. Nice dropped their first points of the season last round when they drew 1-1 with Lille. Marseille got their first win of the season last round when they defeated Lorient. Could we see a Balotelli debut?

My Pick – Nice 2, Marseille 1: Goals by Plea, Balotelli, and Gomis
Brad’s Pick – Nice 1, Marseille 1: Goals by Plea and Thauvin

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