The Austin Chronicle

England Plays Through

By Nick Barbaro, December 22, 2008, 6:03pm, The Score

It's a pretty dead time in the football world, with just about everybody in midwinter break – except England, of course, where there's the traditional full slate of games on Boxing Day, then another two days later on Sunday. Fox Soccer Channel will show four English Premiere League games each day (schedule below), but Stoke City fans will doubtless be at Fadó Irish Pub Friday morning at 6:40am to watch the Potters host Manchester United (pay-per-view only).

That starts a tough stretch for Stoke: their next three games are against co-leaders Liverpool and Chelsea, plus West Ham, one of the teams they're fighting to avoid relegation.

Manchester United has been away from England for a bit: off in in Yokohama, Japan, winning the 2008 Club World Cup, 1-0, over South American champ LDU Quito – their third major trophy of the year, to go with the English and European championships.

The draw for this season's UEFA Champions League final 16 was announced this week, headlined by three Italy-England matchups (see full list below). Plays starts Feb. 24-25.

Next week, Top 10s of 2008; soon thereafter, the Austin Aztex USL-1 and PDL 2009 schedules – said to be all but finalized, pending final sign-off from a few clubs.

English Soccer on TV:
Friday, Dec. 26
Chelsea-West Brom (live), 7am.
Manchester City-Hull (live), 9am.
Aston Villa-Arsenal (live), 11am.
Portsmouth-West Ham (delay), 1:30pm.

Stoke-Manchester United (live), 6:40am.
Liverpool-Bolton (live), 8:55am.

SUNDAY, Dec. 28

Fulham-Chelsea (live), 9am.
Blackburn-Manchester City (live), 10am.
Everton-Sunderland (delay), 12:30pm.
West Brom-Tottenham (delay), 5pm.

Newcastle-Liverpool (live), 5:55am.
Arsenal-Portsmouth (live), 7:55am.
(Round of 16 starts Feb. 24-25)
(Teams listed first host the first game)

Chelsea vs. Juventus
Inter Milan vs. Manchester United
Arsenal vs. Roma
Real Madrid vs. Liverpool
Villarreal vs. Panathinaikos
Sporting Lisbon vs. Bayern Munich
Atletico Madrid vs. FC Porto
Lyon vs. Barcelona

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