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Top games to watch on March 18-24, 2022

El Clasico, the European World Cup Play-offs headline our list of must-watch games on March 18-24, 2022

March 18, 2022 By Ali M.
Real Madrid vs Barcelona, Aston Villa vs Arsenal, Monaco vs PSG, Portugal vs Turkey, and Mexico vs USMNT comprise our list of must-watch games.

Top games to watch this week

Friday, March 18

Wolves vs Leeds (English Premier League)

Athletic Club vs Getafe (La Liga)

Sassuolo vs Spezia (Serie A)

Genoa vs Torino (Serie A)

Bochum vs Borussia Mönchengladbach (Bundesliga)

Vizela vs Famalicao (Primeira Liga)

Saint-Etienne vs Troyes (Ligue 1)

Racing Louisville vs Kansas City Current (NWSL Challenge Cup)

OL Reign vs Portland Thorns (NWSL Challenge Cup)

Saturday, March 19

Wolfsburg vs Hoffenheim (Frauen-Bundesliga)

Aston Villa vs Arsenal (English Premier League)

Rayo Vallecano vs Atlético Madrid (La Liga)

Napoli vs Udinese (Serie A)

Inter vs Fiorentina (Serie A)

Cagliari vs Milan (Serie A)

Bayern München vs Union Berlin (Bundesliga)

Vitoria Guimaraes vs Sporting CP (Primeira Liga)

Nantes vs Lille (Ligue 1)

Middlesbrough vs Chelsea (FA Cup)

New York City vs Philadelphia Union (MLS)

Sunday, March 20

Tottenham vs West Ham (English Premier League)

Real Madrid vs Barcelona (La Liga)

Sevilla vs Real Sociedad (La Liga)

Juventus vs Salernitana (Serie A)

Köln vs Borussia Dortmund (Bundesliga)

Benfica vs Estoril (Primeira Liga)

Boavista vs Porto (Primeira Liga)

Monaco vs PSG (Ligue 1)

Olympique Marseille vs Nice (Ligue 1)

Crystal Palace vs Everton (FA Cup)

Southampton vs Manchester City (FA Cup)

Nottingham Forest vs Liverpool (FA Cup)

New York Red Bulls vs Columbus Crew (MLS)

Austin FC vs Seattle Sounders (MLS)

River Plate vs Boca Juniors (Argentine Primera Division)

Atlas vs Guadalajara (Liga MX)

Monday, March 21

New Zealand vs Fiji (FIFA World Cup Qualifying)

Toluca vs América (Liga MX Femenil)

Guadalajara vs Puebla (Liga MX Femenil)

Tigres UANL vs León (Liga MX Femenil)

Thursday, March 24

Australia vs Japan (FIFA World Cup Qualifying)

Korea Republic vs Iran (FIFA World Cup Qualifying)

Wales vs Austria (FIFA World Cup Qualifying)

Portugal vs Turkey (FIFA World Cup Qualifying)

Italy vs North Macedonia (FIFA World Cup Qualifying)

Sweden vs Czech Republic (FIFA World Cup Qualifying)

Brazil vs Chile (FIFA World Cup Qualifying)

Uruguay vs Perú (FIFA World Cup Qualifying)

Colombia vs Bolivia (FIFA World Cup Qualifying)

Paraguay vs Ecuador (FIFA World Cup Qualifying)

Panama vs Honduras (FIFA World Cup Qualifying)

Mexico vs USA (FIFA World Cup Qualifying)

Costa Rica vs Canada (FIFA World Cup Qualifying)

Most-watched soccer games on U.S. TV: March 7-13, 2022

Real Madrid's 3-1 win in its second leg of the UEFA Champions League round of 16 tie against Paris Saint-Germain was the most-watched soccer game on U.S. TV last week. CBS's broadcast, which was played on Wednesday, March 9, averaged 808,000 viewers and received a 0.51 viewership rating. Frenchman Karim Benzema was the man of the match, scoring a second-half hat-trick that helped Los Blancos edge off PSG 3-2 in the aggregate score.

An average of 759,000 people watched Liverpool fall to Inter Milan at Anfield via CBS on Tuesday, March 8, making it the second most-watched game of the week in the USA. Argentine forward Lautaro Martinez scored the only goal of the day. Unfortunately for the Nerazzurri and Martinez, that strike was not enough to take the game into extra time, given Liverpool's 2-0 away win in the first leg.

Thomas Partey and Alexandre Lacazette celebrated goals against Leicester City on Sunday, March 13. The two helped Arsenal jump over West Ham United and Manchester United in the Premier League standings and now find themselves in fourth place. USA Network's broadcast received a 0.23 viewership rating for the 563,000 average viewers that watched the game.

Most Watched Games, USA, March 7, 13, Real Madrid, PSG, Liverpool, Inter Milan, Arsenal, Leicester, English Premier League, UEFA Champions League

What are this week's must-watch games?

Monaco vs PSG live this Sunday at 8 a.m. ET on beIN Sports USA, Fanatiz, fuboTV, and Sling TV

While PSG's trip to Monaco this weekend doesn't put their title race under jeopardy due to their handsome 15-point lead at the top, this away clash will give them the opportunity to make amends with the disgruntled fans. The Parc des Princes crowd were enraged by the club's embarrassing UEFA Champions League exit at the hands of Real Madrid, and they let the players know, booing everyone in their recent victory over Bordeaux bar Kylian Mbappe. Lionel Messi and Neymar were specifically targeted by the jeers and whistles despite contributing to the goals in that 3-0 triumph, making for a feisty atmosphere. Will Pochettino's men beat Monaco? The hosts aren't at their best, but they are in contention for European football and should thus give the league leaders a fight until the last minute.

Monaco, PSG, Ligue 1, Broadcast Listings

Real Madrid vs Barcelona live this Sunday at 4 p.m. ET exclusively on ESPN+

El Clasico is back! Spanish giants Real Madrid and Barcelona are set to reignite their rivalry this weekend, with the two continental powerhouses locking horns this Sunday in what could be a crucial La Liga battle. The Blaugrana have overcome their horrendous start to the season under Ronald Koeman, with his successor Xavi turning around the club's fortunes. Nonetheless, Los Blancos sit 15 points ahead, meaning the title race is pretty much over for the Catalan giants. However, the third-placed side can catch second-placed Sevilla who are only five points ahead. At Real Madrid, confidence is at an all-time high, with Ancelotti's men winning by 3+ goals in their last three outings, including that unforgettable UEFA Champions League triumph over PSG. These two sides have already met twice this season, with Los Merengues winning on both occasions. Will Barcelona get revenge? Tune in to find out.

Real Madrid, Barcelona, El Clasico, La Liga, Broadcast Listings

European FIFA World Cup Play-offs: Portugal vs Turkey live this Thursday at 3:45 p.m. ET on ESPN, fuboTV, and Sling TV

The European FIFA World Cup play-offs are upon us, with one game leaving football fans extremely anxious. That match is none other than Portugal's tie with Turkey, with the Euro 2016 winners needing to beat two oppositions if they wish to make it to Qatar 2022. Cristiano and Co. missed out on automatic qualification after losing 2-1 to Serbia on the final matchday of the group stage, meaning they now have to win Path C if they wish to progress. Unfortunately, if Portugal were to get past Turkey, then they could face Italy in the finals as they have been drawn in the same path as the European champions. Nonetheless, Fernando Santos' men must first focus on beating Ay-Yıldızlılar, led by Inter Milan ace Çalhanoğlu, who are a formidable side.

Portugal, Turkey, Broadcast Listings, FIFA World Cup Qualifying

CONCACAF World Cup Qualifying: Mexico vs USMNT live this Thursday at 10 p.m. ET live on Paramount+, TUDN USA, Univision, CBS Sports Network, and fuboTV

The CONCACAF World Cup qualifiers return this midweek, with two continental powerhouses set to locks horns in Mexico vs USMNT. Both sides currently occupy the automatic qualification spots as they sit in third and second respectively. With Canada running away with the top spot, El Tri and the Stars and Stripes will battle it out for the runners-up slot. The two nations are tied on 21 points, and with fourth-placed Panama sitting only four points behind, neither side can afford to lose this game. The last time these two national teams met, Gregg Berhalter's men emerged victorious, with goals from Pulisic and McKennie guiding them to a 2-0 triumph. Will we witness a repeat in Thursday's Estadio Azteca showdown? Don't miss this clash.

This week in women's football, March 18, March 24, NWSL Challenge Cup, Angel City FC, North Carolina Courage, OL Reign, 

The NWSL regular season is finally out, the NWSL Challenge Cup's kick-off is right around the corner, and ATA Football has juicy games in the weekend lineup. Take a look at what is trending this week in women's football.

NWSL announced 2022 regular season schedule

Angel City FC and North Carolina Courage kick off the 10th edition of the NWSL regular season on April 29. The 2022 Championship game will be played on October 29. 

Twelve teams are set to compete in a single table, 132-match regular season. Each side will play 22 regular-season games, with 11 home ties and 11 away fixtures. The league announced that "a significantly smaller number of contests have been scheduled during FIFA windows, allowing for fewer conflicts" with international windows. 

NWSL debutant Angel City FC and North Carolina Courage kick off the 2022 season at Banc of California Stadium on Friday, April 29. San Diego Wave will make its league debut on the road against Houston Dash on Sunday, May 1.

Make sure to check out the complete schedule in LiveSoccerTV's NWSL competition page.

How to watch NWSL Challenge Cup opening weekend preview

The third edition of the NWSL Challenge Cup kicks off on Friday, with Racing Louisville hosting Kansas City Current at Lynn Family Stadium. Challenge Cup action on Friday is set to end with a showdown between giants OL Reign and Portland Thorns at Lumen Field. 

Three games will unfold on Saturday, but all eyes are on the final game of the day between NWSL Challenge Cup debutants Angel City FC and San Diego Wave at Banc of California Stadium. And lastly, the Houston Dash and Chicago Red Stars go toe-to-toe on Sunday. These two sides met at the first-ever Challenge Cup final in 2020, with the Dash coming out on top 2-0.  

Fans around the world can watch opening weekend games live on Twitch, while supporters in the USA can catch the matches exclusively on Paramount+. 

Friday, March 18

Racing Louisville vs. Kansas City Current at 7:30 p.m. ET

OL Reign vs. Portland Thorns at 10 p.m. ET

Saturday, March 19

North Carolina Courage vs. NJ/NY Gotham FC at 7 p.m. ET

Orlando Pride vs. Washington Spirit at 7 p.m. ET

Angel City FC vs. San Diego Wave at 9 p.m. ET

Sunday, March 20

Houston Dash vs. Chicago Red Stars at 7 p.m. ET

ATA Football weekend lineup 

Seven European League matches will stream exclusively on ATA Football this weekend. The action begins on Friday with a Frauen Bundesliga match between reigning champions Bayern Munich and Eintracht Frankfurt. Here is how you can watch the six other matches this weekend. 

Friday, March 18

Dijon FCO vs. Olympique Lyonnais at 1:45 p.m. ET

  • USA: atafootball.com, nbcsports.com, Fanatiz

  • UK & Ireland: atafootball.com

  • Germany & Italy: atafootball.com, DAZN

Bayern Munich vs. Eintracht Frankfurt at 2:15 p.m. ET

  • USA: atafootball.com, nbcsports.com, Fanatiz

Saturday, March 19

Napoli vs. Juventus at 7:30 a.m. ET

  • USA: atafootball.com, Fanatiz

  • Canada, UK, Ireland, Germany: atafootball.com

Wolfsburg vs. TSG Hoffenheim at 9 a.m. ET

  • USA: atafootball.com, Fanatiz

AS Roma vs. AC Milan at 9:30 a.m. ET

  • USA: atafootball.com, Fanatiz

  • Canada & Germany: atafootball.com

Sunday, March 20

FC Inter vs. Sampdoria at 9:30 a.m. ET

  • USA: atafootball.com, Fanatiz

  • Canada & Germany: atafootball.com

FC Fleury vs. Bordeaux at 9:45 a.m. ET

  • USA: atafootball.com, Fanatiz

  • UK, Ireland, Germany, Italy: atafootball.com

Biggest stories of the week

Thomas Tuchel sets Champions League record as Chelsea secure quarterfinal berth

Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel has landed another remarkable milestone after guiding his side to the quarterfinals of this year's UEFA Champions League. The 48-year-old German coach oversaw the Blues' 2-1 win over Lille in their round of 16 second leg clash at the Stade Pierre Mauroy, becoming the manager with the most wins in his first 50 appearances.

Wednesday night's encounter began on a positive note for the hosts who were looking for a favorable result after suffering a 2-0 defeat at Stamford Bridge in the first leg. A penalty that went in favor of Xeka in the 37 minute was converted by Burak Yilmaz. However, the lead did not last as USMNT star Christian Pulisic found the back of the net in back-to-back Champions League games to tie the game ahead of half time.

With 18 minutes of regulation time left, Mason Mount assisted Cesar Azplicueta to score Chelsea's second of the night, ruining any desire of a comeback for the host. The 4-1 aggregate win was enough to take the London club over the finish line as they joined the likes of Manchester City and Liverpool as the remaining English contingents in the competition.

A number of milestones were attained following the night's win, with Thomas Tuchel's feat being top of the list. Ahead of kick-off, the former Paris Saint-Germain boss ranked among Zinedine Zidane (31) and Pep Guardiola (30) as the only three managers to register the most wins in 50 appearances in the competition. With the triumph over Lille, the German coach rose to the top of the list with 32 victories.

American family looking to make "serious bid' to buy Chelsea

Numerous buyers have thrown their hat in the ring to purchase one of Europe's most successful clubs: Chelsea. The conflict between Russia and Ukraine has set a spotlight on owner Roman Abramovich, with the billionaire tycoon now being forced to sell the club after additional sanctions had been imposed on him by the UK government stemming from his alleged relationship with Vladimir Putin.

And now, an American group have decided to get involved. MLB (Major League Baseball) fans will probably be quite familiar with the Ricketts family, who have owned the Chicago Cubs since January 2009 after making an estimated $900 million bid for the team. 

However, the name may become more familiar to football fans as well following recent reports that the Ricketts family plan to put a bid in to buy Chelsea.

At the moment, there are four Premier League clubs under American ownership: Manchester United, Liverpool, Burnley, and Arsenal, while Aston Villa is 50 per cent American owned.

Chelsea are no strangers to affiliations with Americans. The Blues made history back in January 2019 when they signed USMNT international Christian Pulisic for approximately $73 million (£57.6 million), making the Pennsylvania-born attacker the most expensive North American signing of all time.

According to the same report, the Ricketts family, who are leading an investment group, will be looking to make their official bid to buy Chelsea on Friday.

Juventus makes history for all the wrong reasons as the Bianconeri succumb to Villarreal in the UEFA Champions League

Juventus have been shocked by Villarreal in the UEFA Champions League and will have to pick up the pieces of one more failed attempt to win the coveted continental competition. Not even Massimiliano Allegri's return to their dugout was enough to see them back to the last eight, and now they have been forced out of the competition by a team ready to leave a lasting impression after winning their first European cup last year.

The Bianconeri dominated ball possession for most of the clash, but after being denied over and over by goalkeeper Geronimo Rulli, the Italian side were not able to hold their ground against a consistent rival. It only took Villarreal 14 minutes to score three goals in the final portion of the game, and the Yellow Submarine have now made it past the round of 16 for the first time since the 2008-09 season.

Unai Emery's men proved to the world that hard work pays off. The Spanish outfit have joined an elite list of teams to defeat Juventus at their very own ground in a UEFA Champions League knockout stage clash, following in the footsteps of Man United, Deportivo La Coruna, Bayern Munich, Real Madrid, and Ajax.

Huge blow for Real Madrid as La Liga leaders could be without two key players for El Clasico

Real Madrid are preparing for a highly-anticipated showdown with bitter rivals Barcelona in La Liga this weekend, and while confidence is at an all-time high at Santiago Bernabeu, Los Blancos have been rocked with two potential blows. The league leaders could enter this clash without two influential players: Ferland Mendy and Karim Benzema.

Starting with Mendy, he is the one guaranteed to miss the third Clasico of this season. The Frenchman, who sat out Real Madrid's sensational comeback victory over PSG in the UEFA Champions League due to suspension, suffered a small tear in his adductor.

While this should not be a huge concern for the club's season, as they are fighting on both the domestic and European fronts, it is enough to keep him sidelined for Sunday's game against Barcelona. Fortunately for Ancelotti, Nacho, who stepped in for Mendy in the 3-1 triumph over PSG, showed that he is still capable of deputizing despite falling down the pecking order.

As for Benzema, a huge question mark hovers over his fitness. The French superstar picked up a muscular injury in the clash with Mallorca after netting a lovely brace to guide the Merengues to a brilliant 3-0 victory. The 34-year-old is set to undergo medical tests on Friday which should make his availability for El Clasico all the more clearer.

Unlike with Mendy, Real Madrid do not boast a reliable back-up option in Benzema's case. How could they? With eight goals in his last five outings and an additional four assists in as many appearances, the former Lyon forward has established himself as one of the world's best players and is thus irreplaceable.

Ancelotti has already overseen two victories over Barcelona this term, first beating them 2-1 at the Camp Nou back when Ronald Koeman was still in charge before triumphing 3-2 in extra-time in the Spanish Super Cup semifinals. However, the Catalan giants have drastically improved since then, and with Los Blancos possibly having to play without their top scorer, things will be difficult for the hosts.

Other key headlines from the world of football

Harry Kane breaks Wayne Rooney's Premier League record after producing a miss of the season contender in Brighton win

Tottenham Hotspur's Harry Kane managed the best recovery possible after missing a gilt-edged chance to break the deadlock in Wednesday night meeting with Brighton. The 28-year-old striker inspired his side to a remarkable 2-0 win at the Amex Stadium, breaking Wayne Rooney's record for the most away goals scored by a player in the Premier League's history.

In retrospect, Harry Kane has now scored 95 goals in 139 appearances away from home in the English top-flight, surpassing the Manchester United icon's record and becoming the competition's all-time top scorer in away games. He landed the feat by making 104 fewer appearances than the former Three Lions superstar.

Sweden decide to call up veteran striker Ibrahimovic ahead of World Cup playoffs

Zlatan has scored 36 times in 68 appearances for Milan since returning in 2019, and it's that form, plus his experience, that has led Sweden to decide to hand him a call-up. 

Ibrahimovic has been out for much of the year due to an Achilles tendon issue, but recently made his return to action last weekend as Milan secured a hard-fought 1-0 win over Empoli. The Blågult will be facing the Czech Republic later this month as they look to book a ticket at the upcoming 2022 FIFA World Cup, with the winner ultimately facing Poland for a coveted berth at the tournament that's set to take place in Qatar near the end of the year.

Manchester United face potential sanction as fans throw bottles at Diego Simeone following UCL exit

Manchester United could be hit with a hefty fine in the coming days for the misconduct of their fans during Tuesday night's UEFA Champions League clash with Atletico Madrid. A video footage which has emerged showed the supporters of the club throwing bottles at Diego Simeone after the Argentine coach wildly celebrated his side's quarterfinal qualification with their 1-0 win at Old Trafford.

Los Rojiblancos secured a 2-1 victory on aggregate thanks to Renan Lodi's first-half goal, and they defended their lead in the second half in a manner that enraged United's supporters, players, and coaching staff. Aided by a number of bad calls by referee Slavko Vincic, the Liga club ran down the clock with different antics, sparking a massive outrage across the Theatre of Dreams at full-time.


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