Scottish Premier League champs Celtic FC host the EPL champs Leicester City in the 2016 International Champions Cup at Celtic Park in Glasgow on Saturday.
The round-of-16 knockout stage continues at the Euro 2016 tournament in France on Sunday, June 26th with reigning world champion Germany taking on Slovakia in Lille. The winning country will carry on to the quarterfinals while the loser will be packing their bags and heading home. If the game is even after 90 minutes it will go to 30 minutes of extra time. If it’s still tied, it will then be decided by a penalty shootout. Slovakia is seeking its first European Championship while West Germany was crowned winners in 1972 in Belgium and 1980 in Rome. They also won the tournament as Germany in England in 1996.
Host nation the USA will be battling it out with Colombia for the third-place game in the 2016 Copa America Centenario soccer tournament this Saturday, June 25th when the two teams meet at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale Arizona. These two teams met in the opening game of the tournament with Colombia winning a 2-0 decision in Group A. However, the Americans rebounded from that defeat to come back and win the group. The USA is playing this match after losing 4-0 to the world’ stop-ranked team Argentina in the semifinals on Tuesday night while Colombia was beaten 2-0 by fifth-ranked Chile.
Wales and Russia will battle it out in Toulouse, France this Monday, June 20th as both nations hope to land a spot in the round of 16 at the Euro 2016 tournament. England leads Group B with four points followed by Wales and Slovakia with three each and Russia with just one. A Russia win would vault them past Wales, while a Welsh win could see them win the group if England fails to beat Slovakia the same day. If Wales and Slovakia finish level on points, Wales will win the tiebreaker due to their head-to-head-win over Slovakia in their opening match. Wales is currently ranked number 26 in the world by FIFA while Russia is ranked 29th.
Group E continues at Euro 2016 in France on Friday, June 17th with 12th-ranked Italy taking on 35th-ranked Sweden in Toulouse. The Italians managed to down the second-ranked team in the world Belgium 2-0 in their tournament opener while Sweden drew 1-1 with 33rd-ranked Republic of Ireland. Italy was crowned champions of Europe back in 1968 and has lost a pair of Finals while Sweden is seeking their first European championship. Sweden and Ireland are seen as the underdogs of this group with Italy and Belgium being the favorites to advance to the knockout stages.
The top two teams in Group C will meet each other at the Euro 2016 tournament in France this Thursday, June 15th when Germany takes on Poland at the Stade de France in Saint-Denis. The Germans won their first match 2-0 against 19th-ranked Ukraine while Poland edged 25th-ranked Northern Ireland 1-0. Germany enters the game as the reigning world champions and are ranked number four in the world by FIFA while Poland is ranked number 27. This is one of the toughest groups in the event and each point will be extremely valuable. The top two teams in each of the six groups will advance to the round-of-16 knockout stage and the top four third-place teams will join them.
Group C will kick off at the Euro 2016 tournament in France this Sunday, June 12th with a match between 25th-ranked Northern Ireland and 27th-ranked Poland in Nice. The other teams in the group are fourth-ranked Germany and 19th-ranked Ukraine. This is one of the toughest groups in the event and each point will be extremely valuable. The top two teams in each of the six groups will advance to the round-of-16 knockout stage and the top four third-place teams will join them.
Sheffield Wednesday is one step away from reaching the English Championship League Playoff Final after defeating Brighton and Hove Albion 2-0 in the first leg of their semifinal showdown. Wednesday is in the driver’s seat after their home victory at Hillsborough Stadium on May 13 and can wrap things up when the two teams meet at the Amex Stadium in the second leg on Monday, May 16th. Brighton has their work cut out for them since no team has ever erased a 2-0 deficit in a Championship League Playoff semifinal. The winner of this series will go on to face the winner of the Hull City vs Derby County semifinal at Wembley Stadium on Saturday, May 28th with the victor winning promotion into the English Premier League.
West Ham United can guarantee a spot in the 2016/17 Europa League with a road win at the Britannia Stadium in Stoke City in the season finale of the English Premier League this Sunday, May 15th. They put themselves in this position with a big 3-2 win over Manchester United on Tuesday night in the club’s last ever game at their Upton Park/Boleyn Ground stadium. The London side will move into the Olympic Stadium for the next Premier League campaign. No matter what the result of the game is though, Stoke will be resigned to a mediocre mid-table finish this season. The hosts’ last outing was a 2-1 loss at Selhurst Park in London to Crystal Palace.
With Leicester already winning the English Premier League, the most attractive game this weekend is the Manchester City vs Arsenal clash at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester this Sunday, May 8th. Both teams are trying to hang onto their top-four positions to make sure they qualify for the 2016/17 European Champions League. Man City was just knocked out of this year’s tournament with a 1-0 aggregate loss to Spanish La Liga giants Real Madrid on Wednesday while Arsenal’s last match was a 1-0 home win over Norwich City. Man City was also beaten 4-2 down in Southampton last weekend in their last Premier League match.