This news of a potential new ground for Chelsea FC is very personal to me.
For several years now my buddy’s place, which is literally across the street from Battersea Power Station, has served as London base of operations for an annual trip, where myself and a few fellow soccer nerds jam-pack as many matches as humanly possible into a 4- or 5-day period.
My friend’s kitchen window looks out over the historic, disused monstrosity, which may soon be Chelsea FC’s historic, disused monstrosity, and may soon be the site of Stamford Bridge’s replacement.
Also on a personal level, I’d like to know about the small gastro-pub just behind the historic site, about whether a certain, stunningly lovely Canadian remains on duty there?
Ahem. Let’s move on.
On a non-personal level, here are the important things to know about Friday’s big talker out of London:
- Chelsea FC needs a new ground. Stamford Bridge, in haughty West London, is a fine ground. But at about 42,000, the capacity can’t match the larger, current standard bearers like Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium or Manchester United’s Old Trafford.
- Battersea Power Station, which went on the market in February, is a historic landmark, so there are important implications well beyond sports to consider in all this.
- Chelsea officials would like to include some of the original design elements, such as the signature foursome of smokestacks, into the facility design.
- Officials at Stamford Bridge say a new facility has potential to become one of the “most iconic football stadiums in the world.”
- Also in the club’s announcement Friday: “We must also stress that making an offer for the Battersea Power Station site does not mean the club has made a definitive decision to leave Stamford Bridge.”
- The club’s official announcement is here.
Oh, and this … Battersea Power Station is the image on Pink Floyd’s Animals album. The notorious photo shoot involved an inflatable pink pig. I am absolutely not making any of this up.
Round two of the UEFA Champions League is back on Tuesday, and while clubs cannot book their place in the Round of 16 just yet it’s just as easy for them to put themselves out of contention.
Three Premier League sides will be action on the afternoon, including Tottenham — who has the chance to start Group H play with six points.
Meanwhile, Liverpool and Manchester City will also take the pitch in Group E and F, respectively.
The day’s biggest clash of the day though comes in Germany as Borussia Dortmund and Real Madrid meet in the other Group H fixture. Dortmund will be looking for a positive result after falling to Spurs in their opening day loss in the competition.
[ MORE: Who is the most complete striker in the Premier League? ]
Here’s the full rundown of matches on Tuesday’s UCL docket.
All games kick off at 2:45 p.m. ET
Spartak Moscow vs. Liverpool
Sevilla vs. Maribor
Manchester City vs. Shakhtar Donetsk
Napoli vs. Feyenoord
Besiktas vs. Red Bull Leipzig
Monaco vs. Porto
Borussia Dortmund vs. Real Madrid
APOEL vs. Tottenham Hotspur
The New Orleans Saints will be playing a different sort of football on Sunday at historic Wembley Stadium, but the NFL franchise took in Arsenal’s match today during their trip to London.
[ MORE: PL playback — Who is the most complete striker in the PL? ]
Super Bowl-winning quarterback Drew Brees posted a picture on Instagram with several of his Saints teammates taking in the Arsenal-West Brom fixture at the Emirates Stadium six days before the NFL team plays the Miami Dolphins.
The Saints-Dolphins matchup is the second NFL game to take place in England thus far in 2017, after the Jacksonville Jaguars defeated the Baltimore Ravens, 44-7, on Sunday at Wembley.
Robbie Earle and Robbie Mustoe react to Arsenal’s 2-0 win over West Brom, Brighton’s 1-0 victory against Newcastle and get into a deep discussion over the plethora of strikers in the Premier League.
Join Earle & Mustoe on The 2 Robbies Football Show, Saturdays at 5pm ET. Listen on the NBCSports Radio App and call 855-323-4622 in the U.S. for lively passionate debate.
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This isn’t what Atlanta United wanted to see right before the playoffs, but the club will be praying that it gets one of its biggest stars back in time for the MLS postseason.
[ MORE: Trio of USWNT players stay in locker room for national anthem ]
Miguel Almiron has been ruled out at least three weeks after suffering a hamstring injury during Sunday’s 2-0 win over the Montreal Impact.
Given the projected three-week timetable, Almiron could return for the team’s final two matches of the regular season against the New York Red Bulls and Toronto FC.
Meanwhile, Almiron will also likely miss out on Paraguay’s two final CONMEBOL World Cup qualifiers, which is a devastating blow for the country’s qualification chances. Paraguay currently sits three points behind fifth-place Argentina in South American qualifying.
In his first season in MLS, Almiron has taken the league by storm after scoring nine goals and adding 13 assists. Additionally, the 23-year-old has three game-winning goals for the expansion side, who currently sits third in the Eastern Conference.