Several European leagues appear set to crown champions but the race for European places or alternate silverware is ramping up this weekend.
Werder Bremen v RB Leipzig
Friday 8:30pm European time - DFB Pokal
Bundesliga second-placers RB Leipzig will chase silverware via the DFB-Pokal this term with the league title appearing out of reach. That quest for silverware continues on Friday night when they face former powerhouse Werder Bremen in the DFB-Pokal semi-finals. While the Red Bulls are second in the Bundesliga, Werder are down in 14th in shocking form after seven consecutive league losses which has seen them creep towards relegation. Julian Nagelsmann’s side will smell blood, while the manager has been heavily linked with a move to Bayern Munich and would love to sign off in style.
Sassuolo v Atalanta Bergamo
Saturday 3pm European time - Italian Serie A
Inter Milan seem to have the Scudetto all wrapped up but the battle for places behind them has been thrilling in Serie A this term and Saturday’s clash between Sassuolo and Atalanta will help shape that. Plucky Sassuolo started the season on fire before slipping, but they’ve won their past four league games to move up to eighth and remain in European contention. Atalanta are second behind Inter and ahead of Napoli, Juventus and AC Milan, with a league-high 78 goals scored led by Luis Muriel and Duvan Zapata.
Sunday 1pm European time - Scottish Premiership
Rangers may have run away with the Scottish Premiership title for the first time in a decade, holding a massive 20-point advantage over rivals Celtic but the Old Firm is always tense. Celtic dismissed manager Neil Lennon as part of what has been a miserable season for the Hoops while Steven Gerrard’s stocks continue to rise across town. Another Gers win over their rivals, having not lost to Celtic since December 2019, will put an exclamation mark on an outstanding 2020-21 campaign.
Sunday 5:30pm European time - English Premier League
Old rivals Manchester United and Liverpool meet on Sunday afternoon, although with different agendas. The Red Devils are destined to be runners-up although they’d like to delay rivals Manchester City’s title success as long as possible. They’ve also basically locked away a spot in the Europa League final meaning they can manage their squad. Liverpool are battling for a top four spot and desperately need three points in this clash, sitting five points behind fourth-placed Chelsea with five games to play.
Sunday 9pm European time - Spanish La Liga
Barcelona’s La Liga title charge suffered a major setback with their midweek 2-1 home loss to Granada, missing the chance to go top after leaders Atletico Madrid had stumbled at Bilbao. However there is still only two points separately Atletico from third-placed Barca, with second-placed Real Madrid level on points with the leaders in the three-horse race. In this context, the Catalans’ trip to Valencia will be tricky. Los Che are 14th and winless in their past five but are always a dangerous opponent, particularly at home where they’ve only lost three times in La Liga this term.