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Top games to watch on Mar. 19-25, 2021

Real Sociedad vs Barcelona, Leicester vs Man United headline top live games to watch on March 19-25, 2021

March 19, 2021 By Ali M.
Real Sociedad vs Barcelona, Leicester vs Man United, Everton vs Man City, West Ham vs Arsenal, and the UEFA FIFA World Cup qualifiers comprise our list of must-watch games.

What are the must-watch games this week?

Real Sociedad vs Barcelona this Sunday at 4 p.m. ET live on beIN Sports

Barcelona are gearing up for a crucial month of football, starting this weekend with their highly-anticipated trip to Real Sociedad in La Liga. Despite crashing out of the UEFA Champions League, the Blaugrana are one of the most in-form clubs in Europe right now and are the only team yet to lose a top-flight fixture in 2021 in Europe's top-five leagues. This unbeaten run will be put to the test in their trip to the Anoeta as they will take on the fifth-placed Txuri-urdin. Messi and Co. have fought their way back into the title race and are only four points behind league leaders Atletico after what has been a tumultuous season. La Pulga will look to inspire his team to another victory as a slip-up, be it a draw or defeat, could be the final blow to Barcelona's La Liga campaign.

Real Sociedad, Barcelona, Broadcast Listings, La Liga 

ESPN+ continue live coverage of the 2020/21 FA Cup with this weekend quarter-final showdowns, ft. Everton vs Man City, Leicester vs Man Utd

The 2020/21 FA Cup campaign resumes this Saturday, with all four quarter-final fixtures taking place this weekend. ESPN+ continue their dedicated coverage of England's prestigious cup tournament, with the American broadcasters set to bless the US screens with the two most-anticipated last-eight ties: Everton vs Man City on Saturday at 1:30 p.m. ET and Leicester vs Man Utd on Sunday at 1 p.m. The Citizens will be making the trip to Goodison Park with the sole aim of beating Ancelotti's side as the Premier League leaders look to make the semis and keep their hopes of winning the treble alive. The other exciting showdown will see the Red Devils visit the King Power Stadium and having beaten Man City, West Ham, and AC Milan in the span of 11 days, Solskjaer's men will be high on confidence for their clash with Vardy and Co. Alongside ESPN+, all four quarter-final games will also be aired on SiriusXM FC for fans in the United States.

Leicester, Manchester United, Broadcast Listings, FA Cup

European World Cup qualifiers kick off this midweek as Netherlands, Belgium, and France begin their path to Qatar 2022 with tricky fixtures

The road to Qatar 2022 finally gets underway in Europe, with Matchday 1 of the UEFA FIFA World Cup qualifiers kicking off this midweek. The action commences with two simultaneous 1 p.m. ET kick-offs, with Netherlands visiting Turkey in a tricky game for Frank de Boer's men while Estonia host the Czech Republic in the other fixture. Later on Wednesday, reigning world champions France take on a Ukraine side that finished ahead of Portugal in the Euro 2020 qualifiers with an unbeaten record. Elsewhere, Belgium will lock horns with Gareth Bale's Wales as the Red Devils look to prove why they are the number one ranked nation in the world. These World Cup qualifiers will be aired on ESPN+ so make sure not to miss the action!

This week in women's football, March 19, March 25, 2021, Arsenal, Manchester United, FA WSL

ATA Football set to stream FA WSL matchup between Arsenal and Manchester United

FA Women's Super League fans will be able to stream Arsenal's clash against Manchester United for free on Friday, March 19, at 2:30 p.m. ET. Fourth-place Gunners will host the third-placed Red Devils at Meadow Park in London to conclude Matchday 17.

Manchester United need a flawless end to its FA WSL 2020/21 campaign to have a chance at winning the title. The Red Devils are six points behind first-placed Chelsea and have six games left in the campaign. More importantly, their upcoming game against Arsenal will be their toughest challenge with West Ham, Brighton, Tottenham, Bristol City and Everton left to play in the remainder of the campaign. A win at Meadow Park is a must for Casey Stoney and her women's ambitions.

UEFA Women's Champions League quarter-finals confirmed

Division 1 Arkema leaders Paris Saint-Germain booked a spot in the Women's Champions League quarterfinals despite forfeiting its round of 16 second leg against Sparta Prague. The Parisians defeated Sparta 5-0 in the first leg at home last week but they suffered a COVID-19 outbreak that forced them to cancel their league match against rivals Lyon and forfeit the second leg of their round of 16 tie. However, the French side was admitted to the next round because the forfeit only counted as a 3-0 win for the Czech club, adding up to a 5-3 aggregate score.

Quarterfinal ties 

  • PSG vs. Lyon (March 23 / March 31, at 12:30 p.m. ET)

  • Barcelona vs. Manchester City (March 24, at 7:30 a.m. ET / March 31 at 11 a.m. ET)

  • Chelsea vs. Wolfsburg (March 24, at 12 noon ET / March 31, at 12:30 p.m. ET)

  • Bayern Munich vs. Rosengard (March 24, at 2 p.m. ET / April 1, at 1 p.m. ET)

W-League updates and upcoming fixtures

Australia's W-League regular season is nearing its end as the teams fight to win the Premier title and spot in the four-team playoff. Sydney lead the table with 24 points from 10 games, winning eight and losing two. Brisbane Roar are in second place with 22 points after 11 games and tied in goal differential – 14 – with Sydney. Melbourne Victory – with a game in hand – and Adelaide United fill the third and fourth position, respectively. Canberra United are one point away from the fourth playoff spot with a game in hand.

Biggest stories of the week

Messi equals Xavi's record in 4-1 league win over Huesca

Lionel Messi starred in Barcelona's weekend triumph over Huesca, scoring an excellent brace and assisting another goal in the Catalan giants' 4-1 win over the relegation-battling side. The Argentine ace broke the deadlock, scoring an exquisite worldie to hand the Camp Nou side a 1-0 lead. Forty minutes later, the six-time Ballon d'Or winner got his second goal contribution, assisting Mingueza for the third of the night courtesy of a pinpoint cross. The Argentine completed his brace in the 90th minute, adding to his lead in the Pichichi race. It was an excellent display in a memorable match for La Pulga as he equaled Xavi's incredible club record. Playing his 767th official game for Barcelona, Lionel moved level with the iconic Spaniard for most appearances in a Blaugrana shirt.

Messi moves level with Xavi for most Barcelona appearances

Lonel Messi, Barcelona, Xavi, Record, Huesca, La Liga

Benfica looking for stadium sponsors; sign deal with American agency to help

Allianz Arena, Allianz Stadium, and Allianz Riviera. What do they all have in common? Well, they're the home bases for Bayern Munich, Juventus, and Nice. And all three teams signed an exclusive deal to sell the naming rights to their stadiums to multi-national corporation Allianz over the past decade, which means an additional source of revenue while promoting the club worldwide.

With that in mind, Portuguese giants Benfica have decided they, too, want to try to follow this model. The Eagles recently signed a two-year deal with WME Sports, which is the sports-related branch of the famous WME (William Morris Endeavor Entertainment) agency that's based in Beverly Hills, California to assist in finding a sponsor. For the Portuguese giants, they're hopeful that this partnership will bear fruit as they look to link up with a company who'd be interested in buying the naming rights to the famed Estádio da Luz.

If all works according to plan, and Benfica are able to pull this off, the 37-time Primeira Liga winners will be the first of Portugal's "Big Three" to have this kind of exclusive sponsorship deal. 

UEFA Champions League: Thomas Tuchel sets new record as Chelsea eliminate Atletico

Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel set a new club record after guiding the Blues to back-to-back wins over Atletico Madrid in their UEFA Champions League Round of 16 tie. The 47-year-old German coach oversaw a 2-0 victory at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday night as the Blues booked a quarter-final berth with a 3-0 aggregate win over their Spanish opponent. Subsequently, the result took Chelsea's unbeaten run under the former Paris Saint-Germain boss to 13 in all competitions, making him the manager with the longest unbeaten start in the London club's history.

Tuchel has enjoyed an excellent start at the Bridge!

Thomas Tuchel, Record, Unbeaten, Chelsea, Atletico, UEFA Champions League

Other key headlines from the world of football

The 2020/21 UCL quarter-finalists confirmed

The eight quarter-finalists for the 2020/21 UEFA Champions League season have been confirmed, with Chelsea being the last team to qualify – Bayern Munich were all but destined to get past Lazio. The Blues became the third Premier League side to make the last eight, joining Guardiola's Man City and Klopp's Liverpool. Here are the eight teams to qualify for the quarter-finals:

  1. Dortmund

  2. Liverpool

  3. Man City

  4. PSG

  5. Porto

  6. Real Madrid

  7. Chelsea

  8. Bayern Munich

Tottenhm crash out of Europa League after throwing away 2-0 lead in embarrassing Dinamo Zagreb defeat

Tottenham crashed out of the UEFA Europa League on Thursday in embarrassing fashion, throwing away a 2-0 lead from the first leg to lose 3-2 on aggregate to Dinamo Zagreb. Mourinho's men needed simply to see out the game but conceded two goals from Oršić in the final 30 minutes to force the game into extra-time. The Croatian attacker completed his hat-trick in the 106th minute, sending the north London giants packing. After the game, both Jose and club captain Hugo Lloris apologized to the fans while slamming the team for their performance.

New league to be formed in Europe? Belgium and the Netherlands could link up

The governing body of Belgium's Pro League have been seriously mooting the possibility of an interesting partnership with the Netherlands' Eredivisie. Belgium's top tier recently announced that they'd be in favor of combining their teams with the Netherlands' upper echelon. The two entities would form an organization called "BeNeLiga" - a play on the countries' names "Belgium" and "Netherlands". Belgium's selected octet so far are Anderlecht, Club Brugge, Standard Liege, Gent, Genk, Royal Antwerp, Charleroi, and another team which hasn't been decided.

Top games to watch this week

Saturday, March 20

Bayern Munich vs Stuttgart (Bundesliga)

Celta vs Real Madrid (La Liga)

Everton vs Manchester City (FA Cup)

Inter Milan vs Sassuolo (Serie A)

Portimonense vs Porto (Primeira Liga)

Sporting CP vs Vitoria (Primeira Liga)

Sunday, March 21

Chelsea vs Sheffield Utd (FA Cup)

Juventus vs Benevento (Serie A)

West Ham vs Arsenal (EPL)

Lille vs Nimes (Ligue 1)

Fiorentina vs Milan (Serie A)

Leicester vs Man United (FA Cup)

Atlético Madrid vs Alavés (La Liga)

Roma vs Napoli (Serie A)

Aston Villa vs Tottenham (EPL)

Real Sociedad vs Barcelona (La Liga)

Sporting Braga vs Benfica

Lyon vs PSG (Ligue 1)

Dominican Republic vs USA (Olympic Soccer Qualifying)

Costa Rica vs México (Olympic Soccer Qualifying)

Monday, March 22

Haiti vs Canada (Olympic Soccer Qualifying)

El Salvador vs Honduras (Olympic Soccer Qualifying)

Tuesday, March 23

PSG vs. Lyon (UEFA Women's Champions League)

Wednesday, March 24

Barcelona vs. Manchester City (UEFA Women's Champions League)

Chelsea vs. Wolfsburg (UEFA Women's Champions League)

Turkey vs Netherlands (FIFA World Cup qualifiers)

Belgium vs Wales (FIFA World Cup qualifiers)

France vs Ukraine (FIFA World Cup qualifiers)

Portugal vs Azerbaijan (FIFA World Cup qualifiers)

Costa Rica vs Dominican Republic (Olympic Soccer Qualifying)

Mexico vs USA (Olympic Soccer Qualifying)

Thursday, March 25

Spain vs Greece (FIFA World Cup qualifiers)

Germany vs Iceland (FIFA World Cup qualifiers)

England vs San Marino (FIFA World Cup qualifiers)

Italy vs Northern Ireland (FIFA World Cup qualifiers)

El Salvador vs Haiti (Olympic Soccer Qualifying)

Honduras vs Canada (Olympic Soccer Qualifying)

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