Pick of the week is a weekly blog for people that love the beautiful game. It comes out every Sunday and hand picks upcoming matches worldwide that week, which look set up for 90 minutes of non-stop action.
All times are in GMT.
- Al Ahly vs El Zamalek ( Feb 09 17:30 )
Crazy fans, savage rivalry, packed stadium, now it makes more sense why they call it ‘the worlds most violent derby’. One of the lesser known world fixtures in world football almost flew over my head, but this is a gem of a game. The Cairo Derby’s animosity is something unique in it’s own right, attracting huge crowd as last year the match commanded a staggering 40 million viewers in Egypt alone, over half the population! This monumental fixture means foreign referees always officiates the match and has to played in a neutral stadium, in the futile attempt to prevent riots kicking of. The two most successful clubs in the continent are separated by 1 point; both the front-runners to win the league, the stakes are as high as they can get.
2. Juventus vs Napoli ( Feb 13 19:45 )
While Juventus recovered miraculously to revive their tittle hopes; they face the toughest test to date, in what could be a season defining match for both clubs. The two best teams currently sit 6 points above their nearest competitors and separated by only 2 points. Napoli are playing beautiful football, with Insigne tearing through the right side with 10 goals and assists so far, the unstoppable Higuain is Napoli’s most valuable asset with 23 goals already, and if he continues this form, he can break the copacannoniere record of 36 goals, set 87 years ago by Gino Rosetti. Interesting battles all around the pitch, with Juventus’ defence conceded a resounding 1 goal in the last 9 matches, facing Napoli who scored just under 4 goals in their last 5 league fixtures. The intensity will be that of a cup final, with a ‘win at all costs necessary’ attitude as the potential winner takes huge strides in winning this years Scudetto.
3. Borussia Dortmund vs Hannover 96 ( Feb 13 14:30 )
Dortmund take on Hannover 96 after a disappointing match against Hertha Berlin with chances far and few between, but despite the anomaly, BVB remain one of the best attacking sides in the league with Aubameyang ripping up defences with an impressive 20 goals, with Mkhitaryan also delivering with 7 goals, 9 assists. Marco Reus returning after his long time injury and currently at 9 goals. From ruthless to toothless, Hannover haven’t gained any points in 6 games. A lethargic team with a serious lack of communication and finishing skills, sit bottom of the table. A hopeless Hannover side take on the hungry Dortmund side at the Signal Iduna Park who look to bounce back after the goalless draw in the capital in a potentially high-scoring game.
4. AEK Athens vs Olympiacos ( Feb 13 17:30 )
Expect a fiery battle in the capital between the two Athens clubs in this league fixture. The game will be under heavy security as both players and fans ready themselves for the start of the match; where all hell brakes loose. Flares, riots, fights, goals, and the occasional ‘mistimed tackle’ ,the whole lot, in what makes this one of the most watched derbies in Greece.
5. Arsenal vs Leicester ( Feb 14 12:00 )
An interesting match in the Premier League, as current front runners Leicester take on Arsenal, who slipped down to 4th place after being favourites with Leicester and Man City to win the league, separated by 8 points. The foxes look more like Premier League winners every week, with a comfortable win over Manchester City away from home and now create a 5 point gap next to 2nd place Tottenham. A big game for both teams as if Arsenal don’t win, Leicester’s remaining fixtures include no teams in the top 6, and Arsenal need to begin to close the gap by first beating Leicester and going on a run. Time is running out for Arsenal, with no win in 4 games their hopes of winning the tittle is slipping fast, and with Guardiola arriving in Manchester next season, Chelsea and Man United out of the picture, this is the window of opportunity, and it’s closing fast.
6. Manchester City vs Tottenham ( Feb 14 16:15 )
The other two tittle challengers play each other hours after Leicester face Arsenal in what will be a crucial week for the top 4 as both teams separated by 1 point and challenging each other for the title, this is a great opportunity for catching up to the foxes. Pochettino has got this Spurs side in great shape as he holds one of the few complete teams in the league, a great spine with a good mix of youth and experience, face an underwhelming Man City. After a comprehensive defeat to Leicester and key players not performing against the big sides, it looks more and more unlikely how city will turn this around, but who knows this season, with Leicester sitting top, Chelsea in 13th place and newly promoted side Watford in mid-table?
West Ham vs Liverpool ( Feb 09 19:45 )
Paris Saint Germain vs Lyon ( Feb 10 19:45 )
Celta Vigo vs Sevilla ( Feb 11 19:30 )
Real Madrid vs Athletic Club ( Feb 13 15:00 )
Melbourne City FC vs Melbourne Victory ( Feb 13 08:00 )
Fiorentina vs Inter ( Feb 14 19:45 )
Feel like I missed out any matches or wanna give me any feedback? Comment Below!