Weekend TV Preview: 14-15 November 2009 Saturday 14 November
07.00 New Zealand v Bahrain, World Cup Qualifying Play-off 2nd Leg (0-0), British Eurosport
A treat for early risers to decide the 24th qualifier for next summer's World Cup. A goalless first leg sees the All Whites as narrow favourites to progress. Bahrain haven't relied on Brazialian ringers for their success (unlike their neighbours) and fully deserve their shot at getting to the finals. Well worth getting up for.12.05 Huddersfield Town v Wycombe Wanderers, League One, Sky Sports 1/HD1
Nice to see Sky showing a League One match that doesn't feature an ex-Premier League team. Huddersfield are going well in League One, currently sat in the play-off spots, while Wycombe are nailed to the bottom with just one win so far. The Terriers have scored 14 goals in their last three home games so it could be another tough day for Wycombe.15.00 Wales v Scotland, International Friendly, Sky Sports 1/HD1
Honestly, why do these guys even bother anymore?16.00 Russia v Slovenia, World Cup Qualifying Play-off 1st leg, ESPN
An interesting choice of match to cover, probably made because of its kick off time rather than the teams involved. Russia ran Germany close in qualifying and amassed a points tally that would have seen them through in other groups. Slovenia finished their qualifying strongly, nudging out Czech Republic and Northern Ireland. For the Russians, Pavlyuchenko will be hoping for the chance to put himself in the shop window after falling out of favour at Tottenham.17.00 Brazil v England, International Friendly, ITV1/HD (not Scotland)
A pointless money-making jolly in the desert? Well maybe, but Brazil are good value wherever or however you play them. A large ex-pat community could make it feel more like a home game in the 39,000 seater Khalifa Stadium. A chance to test out new players in a foreign stadium and in front of an excitable crowd against decent opposition - maybe it's not such a pointless World Cup warm up after all.17.30 Northern Ireland v Serbia, International Friendly, Sky Sports 1
Northern Ireland's minds will be on a favourable seeding and draw in the Euro 2012 qualifiers, to be made on February 7 in Warsaw. They're currently in the third pot of countries meaning they'll avoid Scotland and the Republic. A run out for Serbia in their warm-up to the World Cup; they finished top of their group ahead of France. Speaking of which...20.00 Republic of Ireland v France, World Cup Qualifying Play-off 1st leg, Sky Sports 1
Everything about this match says draw to me. Ireland were undefeated during qualification and France lost just the once. It was draws that meant these sides are here and not cashing in on some swanky Arabian-based friendly. My prediction is an exhilarating 2-2 here followed by a heart-breaking 0-0 and away goals exit next Wednesday.
Alternatively, you could surf over to Bet365 who are streaming the Bosnia v Portugal play-off over the web.Sunday 15 November16.30 Southampton v Brighton, League One, Sky Sports 1/HD1
Gustavo Poyet takes charge of Brighton in what should be a south coast ding-dong at St Mary's (that used to work so much better when they played at The Dell). A win for Southampton could see them climb out of the relegation zone (and Brighton slip into it) despite their 10 point penalty.18.00 Nigeria v Switzerland, FIFA U17 World Cup Final, British Eurosport
The hosts have made it to the Final but not without controversy. A club coach has claimed that the Nigerian captain Fortune Chukwudi is at least 25, having had the player under him almost a decade ago. FIFA had hoped that the use of random MRI scanning would have eradicated this from the game but suspicions are still rife. They face a Swiss team that is 100% through the tournament and are scoring plenty of goals. Should be a good one.
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