Weekend focus, English Premier League: Liverpool vs. Manchester City

steven gerrard
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When and where: Sunday, 11:00 a.m. Eastern, Anfield, Liverpool

Why this match matters: Liverpool got off to a horrific start last weekend, and with Manchester City and Arsenal occupying the second and third spots on their fixture list, the West Brom match was the one where they needed to get points. One bad result won’t derail a season, and if given their fixture list, it will be understandable if Liverpool start with three straight losses, though supporters are unlikely to be as sanguine about seeing a “3” in the loss column. Expect some premature, apocalyptic speculation if Brendan Rodgers can’t get a result before Arsenal leaves Anfield on Sept. 2.

How they’ve fared: Manchester City got a scare from Southampton on Sunday, a 3-2 win that some saw as a sign of weakness. More readily, it was a championship team showing they can respond respond to adversity, even if such dramatics are becoming an nerve-racking modus operandi. Liverpool was hit by a Zoltan Gera thunderbolt, saw a man sent off, and lost at West Brom on Saturday, 3-0.

Who’s in, who’s out: Sergio Aguero is out a month after hurting his right knee early against the Saints, while it’s unclear when Gareth Barry will return in the middle. In their spots, Edin Dzeko and Jack Rodwell are likely starters. Liverpool will be without Daniel Agger, suspended after picking up a red card on Saturday, as well as left back Jose Enrique, out with a knee injury. Jamie Carragher will try to quiet whispers Sebastian Coates should start, and while Glen Johnson covers for Enrique at left back, Martin Kelly moves into the starting XI.

Likely formations: Liverpool will play a 4-2-3-1 that will function as a 4-3-3. Manchester City will start a 4-4-2 with their wide midfielders playing high as wingers.

What Liverpool needs to do …

To stop City at one endSamir Nasri was City’s key on Sunday. He’ll need to be contained, though speaking more broadly, stopping City’s creators (Nasri and David Silva) will be Liverpool’s number one priority, especially given Aguero’s absence. Doing most of their damage through the middle, Nasri and Silva will demand strong days in defense from Steven Gerrard and Joe Allen, with Liverpool’s other midfielder (Lucas Leiva) left the guard the space Carlos Tevez will hope to exploit. If Liverpool merely relies on Leiva to patrol that area, City will have little trouble picking apart their Martin Sktrel-Carragher-dependent defense.

Possession may also be key. If Liverpool’s successful at containing Nasri and Silva (not giving them opportunities like the one that led to Tevez’s Saturday goal), Yaya Touré will take over. It’s City’s standard tactic: Wait until the hour-mark, then make Touré into an attacking midfielder. At that point, Liverpool’s best options will be (a) if leading, get numbers behind the ball, bringing Jonjo Shelvey on for Stewart Downing to reinforce the midfield, or (b) if tied, rely on their possession game to keep the ball away from City while trying to exploit Touré’s more advanced positioning.

And beat City, at the other: Their only proven goalscoring threats are Luis Suarez and Steve Gerrard, bad news on a number of levels. Gerrard hasn’t been that threatening for some time (hat tricks against Everton not withstanding), and Suarez has failed to score in his two Premier League appearances against Manchester City.

Liverpool’s best option might be a tangent of plan (b), above: Be patient with the ball, even if that involves some negative play, with the goals of keeping the ball away from City and creating some weaknesses (especially down the flanks, where Silva and, to a lesser extent, Nasri may not offer the needed support). Even if they can’t get Suarez into advantageous positions, they could create a match where Andy Carroll (quite a neat piece to have coming off the bench) could be influential in the last half hour.

What City needs to do …

To stop Liverpool on one end: If Jack Rodwell (and Yaya Touré) can help cut off access to Suarez while Vincent Kompany and Joleon Lescott keep Liverpool’s main threat close, Manchester City should be fine. Their defense is more than capable of freezing Suarez out, leaving Gerrard, Fabio Borini and Downing to provide goals.

Borini’s the biggest threat, but despite success in Italy, he’s yet to show he’s a productive Premier League scorer (even if that will likely come). Downing hasn’t scored a Premier League goal in 15 months, leaving Gerrard to summon the old Stevie G if Liverpool’s to find a complement for Suarez.

And beat Liverpool, at the other: Roberto Mancini has to figure Liverpool will be reinforce through the middle, particularly as the midfield tries to prevent Skrtel and Carragher from being exposed. That will leave room down the flanks, especially on the right, where Borini will be tasked with helping protect Johnson. If that happens, City right back Pablo Zabaleta could be a difference maker, combining with Nasri and Tevez to get behind the left side of Liverpool’s defense and work the ball back for Dzeko (and Tevez).

How it might play out: Liverpool may start conservatively, particularly after last weekend’s result. If they can control the tempo and keep the match even through its first act, the Reds can start focusing on how to steal a winner.

At least, that’s what the thinking may be. It’s not exactly what you expect from the home side, but most home sides aren’t going up against Manchester City.

Rodgers should have mild success, particularly at Anfield, but Liverpool’s unlikely to contain City once they bring Touré forward and start really chasing three points. Whether it’s Touré to Mario Balotelli (off the bench) or a Carroll header, this match looks most likely to be decided by a late winner, and although City hasn’t won at Anfield since 2003, a lot has changed around Liverpool and Manchester since Nicolas Anelka was posting doubles for the Citizens.

City has to be considered slight favorites. Look for a 1-0.

Netherlands vs USA: How to watch, live stream link, team news

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This United States men’s national team looks for a legacy-cementing performance when it meets the Netherlands in the 2022 World Cup Round of 16 on Saturday in Al Rayyan.

The Yanks await fitness updates of Christian Pulisic and Josh Sargent but are largely healthy, though the USA has been leaning on largely the same starters deep into all three matches.

STREAM LIVE NETHERLANDS vs USA

Louis van Gaal’s Netherlands opened the tournament with a 2-0 win over Senegal, then drew Ecuador 1-1 before blanking Qatar 2-0.

USA drew Wales 1-1 Wales before a more impressive 0-0 with England and a pivotal 1-0 win over Iran that saw Christian Pulisic injured while scoring a huge goal.

USA fullback Sergino Dest chose the USMNT over the Netherlands and will certainly be in focus Saturday on the right side (presuming he starts his fourth-straight match).

[ LIVE: World Cup 2022 schedule, how to watch, scores, hub ]

Here is everything you need for Netherlands vs USA.


How to watch Netherlands vs USA live, stream link and start time

Kick off: 10am ET, Saturday Dec. 3
Stadium: Khalifa International Stadium, Al Rayyan
TV channels en Español: Telemundo
Streaming en Español: Peacock (all 64 matches)


Key storylines, players to watch closely

The Netherlands are the fourth-best team in ELO Ratings and eighth in FIFA’s oft-debated rankings, while the Yanks are ranked 20th by ELO and 16th by FIFA.

So the big storyline is whether the favorites’ role affects the Dutch at all, having had that label against Ecuador, Senegal, and Qatar, and whether the Yanks can effectively channel their underdog energy again as they did against England.

The huge question, of course, is whether Christian Pulisic is 100%, 75%, or less following the pelvic contusion suffered against Iran. While Tim Weah’s been very good and fullbacks Sergino Dest and Antonee Robinson splendid, Pulisic is no doubt the focus of defenders and the U.S. attack. It’s also worth watching whether Weston McKennie finally has a game-changing performance at this tournament, as the Juventus man has been getting back to full fitness all World Cup.

The Dutch have been thrilled by the performances of 23-year-old Cody Gakpo, who has scored in every game. The back line of Virgil vsn Dijk, Jurrien Timber, and Nathan Ake has been good, allowing just one goal, while Matthijs de Ligt started the first game in place of Timber and Stefan de Vrij looms on the bench. With Frenkie de Jong in the center of the park, this Dutch team is very strong even if it isn’t vintage Holland.


Netherlands vs USA all-time

The USMNT scored a memorable win over the Dutch in 2015 under Jurgen Klinsmann, trailing 1-0 and 3-1 before winning 4-3 with goals from Danny Williams and Bobby Wood in the 89th and 90th minutes to get the win. Gyasi Zardes and John Brooks also scored in the game.

The Dutch had won all four meetings before that and all five games were friendlies occurring between 1998 and 2015.


Netherlands vs USA, World Cup history

The Dutch have never faced the USA at a World Cup, and the home of Johan Cruyff certainly has a more illustrious tournament history.

The Netherlands, like the USMNT, missed the 2018 tournament. That absence came after finishing in third place in 2014 and losing the 2010 final to Spain. They’ve lost three finals in total, two in the mid 1970s, and haven’t lost a World Cup game outside of penalties since that 1-0 loss to Spain in 2010.

The USMNT’s best tournament finish concluded with the controversial loss to Germany in the 2002 quarterfinals, but the Yanks have now reached the knockout rounds the last three times they participated in the World Cup. They’ve only won a knockout round match in 2002.


Netherlands quick facts

Current FIFA world ranking: 8
World Cup titles: 0
World Cup appearances: 10
How they qualified: Qualified automatically from UEFA (Won Group G)
Coach: Louis van Gaal
Key players: Virgil van Dijk, Memphis Depay, Frenkie de Jong, Cody Gakpo

USA quick facts

Current FIFA world ranking: 16
World Cup titles: 0
World Cup appearances: 9
How they qualified: Qualified automatically from CONCACAF (3rd place)
Coach: Gregg Berhalter
Key players: Christian Pulisic, Tyler Adams, Yunus Musah, Weston McKennie

Croatia vs Belgium, live! Score, updates,, stream link, video highlights

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Croatia and Belgium square off Thursday with either star-studded side capable of missing the knockout rounds without a win in Al Rayyan.

2018 finalists Croatia qualifies for the Round of 16 with a win or a draw, while Belgium is in with a win or a draw, a Morocco loss to Canada, and tiebreaker priority.

STREAM LIVE CROATIA vs BELGIUM

How’d we get here? Croatia snapped off a 4-1 win over Canada to move atop the group following an opening draw with Morocco, while Belgium fell to the Moroccans after beating the Canadians.

[ LIVE: World Cup 2022 schedule, how to watch, scores, hub ]

Here is everything you need for Croatia vs Belgium.


How to watch Croatia vs Belgium live, stream link and start time

Kick off: 10am ET, Thursday, Dec. 1
Stadium: Ahmed bin Ali Stadium, Al Rayyan
TV channels en Español: Telemundo
Streaming en Español: Peacock (all 64 matches)


Key storylines, players to watch closely

Croatia looked sleepy in the opening draw with Morocco, a draw that looks better after the Atlas Lions beat Belgium. They snapped to life, perhaps somewhat fueled by Canadian coach John Herdman’s confident pre-match talk, and now look capable of taking down anyone in the field. Or was that merely Canada’s beleaguered defense? We’ll find out when Mateo Kovacic and Co. meet the Belgians.

Kevin De Bruyne made waves after the win over Canada when he said Belgium’s golden generation missed its window by not claiming honors at the 2018 World Cup in Russia, and perhaps it shouldn’t be a surprise that the Red Devils failed to take down Morocco. They’ve been without Romelu Lukaku so far this tournament and Michy Batshuayi has the lone goal. Will Roberto Martinez’s men head home far earlier than expected?


Croatia quick facts

Current FIFA world ranking: 5
World Cup titles: 1 (1966)
World Cup appearances: 15
How they qualified: Qualified automatically from UEFA
Coach: Gareth Southgate
Key players: Harry Kane, Raheem Sterling, Declan Rice

Belgium quick facts

Current FIFA world ranking: 20
World Cup titles: 0
World Cup appearances: 5
How they qualified: Qualified automatically from AFC (Won Group A)
Coach: Dragan Skocic
Key players: Ehsan Hajsafi, Sardar Azmoun, Mehdi Taremi

Canada vs Morocco, live! Score, updates,, stream link, video highlights

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Morocco looks to seal a spot in the 2022 World Cup knockout rounds when it meers eliminated Canada in Al Khor on Thursday.

The Atlas Lions opened the tournament with a 0-0 draw against returning finalists Croatia before surprising Belgium 2-0, both matches taking place in Al Khor.

STREAM LIVE CANADA vs MOROCCO

Canada felt hard done-by after missing an early penalty and losing 1-0 to Belgium, but did not validate dark horse hopes despite an early goal in its second gameI, soundly beaten 4-1 by Croatia.

Maybe leaving Al Rayyan for Al Khor will help Canada get its first World Cup result after going 0-3 in the 1986 tournament and losing both of its matches in Qatar.

[ LIVE: World Cup 2022 schedule, how to watch, scores, hub ]

Here is everything you need for Canada vs Morocco.


How to watch Canada vs Morocco live, stream link and start time

Kick off: 10am ET, Thursday Dec. 1
Stadium: Al Thumama Stadium, Al Khor
TV channels en Español: Telemundo
Streaming en Español: Peacock (all 64 matches)


Key storylines, players to watch closely

How will Canada respond to its 4-1 loss to Croatia? Superior against Belgium and essentially until Croatia equalized on Monday, John Herdman has to decide who will have the mettle to pop off the mat and challenge unbeaten Morocco. One of those faces will surely be Alphonso Davies. Who will join him? Jonathan David and Cyle Larin could use redemptive performances, to be sure.

Morocco looks very, very strong, especially out wide where Hakim Ziyech, Achraf Hakimi, and Sofiane Boufal operate the machine. A coming-out party for Sevilla’s Youssef En-Nesyri could go a long way toward stretching the Atlas Lions’ tournament well into December.


Canada quick facts

Current FIFA world ranking: 5
World Cup titles: 1 (1966)
World Cup appearances: 15
How they qualified: Qualified automatically from UEFA
Coach: Gareth Southgate
Key players: Harry Kane, Raheem Sterling, Declan Rice

Morocco quick facts

Current FIFA world ranking: 20
World Cup titles: 0
World Cup appearances: 5
How they qualified: Qualified automatically from AFC (Won Group A)
Coach: Dragan Skocic
Key players: Ehsan Hajsafi, Sardar Azmoun, Mehdi Taremi

World Cup 2022 schedule – how to watch, groups, calendar, match schedule, brackets, dates

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The World Cup 2022 schedule is locked in and this tournament in Qatar has been sensational as action throughout November and December will capture the imagination of the world.

[ LIVE: Watch World Cup en Espanol en Peacock ]

Saudi Arabia, Japan and Morocco have already pulled off huge upset wins over Argentina, Germany and Belgium respectively as the tournament has delivered plenty of shocks.

From the USMNT and England getting out of their group to Lionel Messi dragging Argentina through and Mexico just missing out on getting out of the group stages, Australia making it to the last 16 amid upsets galore, there are plenty of intriguing games in the group stage.

[ MORE: World Cup rosters for all 32 teams ]

Then we have the small matter of the Round of 16, quarterfinals, semifinals, and final to look forward to. Bring. It. On.

[ MORE: How to watch Premier League in USA ]  

Below is the schedule in full, details on how to watch the games and everything else you need..

[ MORE: World Cup odds ]


World Cup 2022 schedule, start time, dates, how to watch live

  • When: November 20, 2022 to December 18, 2022
  • Group stage game kick-off times: 5am, 8am, 10am, 11am, 2pm (all ET)
  • Location: Qatar
  • TV channels en Español: Telemundo, Universo, Peacock
  • Streaming en Español: Peacock (all 64 matches)

Follow along with ProSoccerTalk for the latest news, scores, storylines, and updates surrounding the 2022 World Cup, and be sure to subscribe to NBC Sports on YouTube!


Group A | Group B | Group C | Group D | Group E | Group F | Group G | Group H

Group A schedule (all kick off times ET)

Recap/highlights: Qatar 0-2 Ecuador – Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor
Recap/highlights: Senegal 0-2 Netherlands – Al Thumama Stadium, Al Khor
Recap/highlights: Qatar 1-3 Senegal – Al Thumama Stadium, Al Khor
Recap/highlights: Netherlands 1-1 Ecuador – Khalifa International Stadium, Al Rayyan
Recap/highlights: Netherlands 2-0 Qatar – Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor
Recap/highlights: Ecuador 1-2 Senegal –  Khalifa International Stadium, Al Rayyan

Group B schedule

Recap/highlights: England 6-2 Iran – Khalifa International Stadium, Al Rayyan
Recap/highlights: USA 1-1 Wales – Ahmed bin Ali Stadium, Al Rayyan
Recap/highlights: England 0-0 USA – Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor
Recap/highlights: Wales 0-2 Iran – Ahmed bin Ali Stadium, Al Rayyan
Recap/highlights: Wales 0-3 England – Ahmed bin Ali Stadium, Al Rayyan
Recap/highlights: Iran 0-1 USA – Al Thumama Stadium, Al Khor

Group C schedule

Recap/highlights: Argentina 1-2 Saudi Arabia – Lusail Iconic Stadium, Lusail
Recap/highlights: Mexico 0-0 Poland – Stadium 974, Doha
Recap/highlights: Argentina 2-0 Mexico – Lusail Iconic Stadium, Lusail
Recap/highlights: Poland 2-0 Saudi Arabia – Education City Stadium, Al Rayyan
Recap/highlights: Poland 0-2 Argentina – Stadium 974, Doha
Recap/highlights: Saudi Arabia 1-2 Mexico – Lusail Iconic Stadium, Lusail

Group D schedule

Recap/highlights: France 4-1 Australia – Al Janoub Stadium, Al Wakrah
Recap/highlights: Denmark 0-0 Tunisia – Education City Stadium, Al Rayyan
Recap/highlights: France 2-1 Denmark – Stadium 974, Doha
Recap/highlights: Tunisia 0-1 Australia – Al Janoub Stadium, Al Wakrah
Recap/highlights: Tunisia 1-0 France –  Education City Stadium, Al Rayyan
Recap/highlights: Australia 1-0 Denmark– Al Janoub Stadium, Al Wakrah

Group E schedule

Recap/highlights: Spain 7-0 Costa Rica – Al Thumama Stadium, Al Khor
Recap/highlights: Germany 1-2 Japan – Khalifa International Stadium, Al Rayyan
Recap/highlights: Spain 1-1 Germany – Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor
Recap/highlights: Japan 0-1 Costa Rica – Ahmed bin Ali Stadium, Al Rayyan
Thursday, December 1: Japan vs Spain (preview) – Khalifa International Stadium, Al Rayyan – 2pm
Thursday, December 1: Costa Rica vs Germany (preview) – Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor – 2pm

Group F schedule

Recap/highlights: Belgium 1-0 Canada – Ahmed bin Ali Stadium, Al Rayyan
Recap/highlights: Morocco 0-0 Croatia – Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor
Recap/highlights: Belgium 0-2 Morocco – Al Thumama Stadium, Al Khor
Recap/highlights: Croatia 4-1 Canada – Khalifa International Stadium, Al Rayyan
Thursday, December 1: Croatia vs Belgium (preview) – Ahmed bin Ali Stadium, Al Rayyan – 10am
Thursday, December 1: Canada vs Morocco (preview) – Al Thumama Stadium, Al Khor – 10am

Group G schedule

Recap/highlights: Brazil 2-0 Serbia – Lusail Iconic Stadium, Lusail
Recap/highlights: Switzerland 1-0 Cameroon – Al Janoub Stadium, Al Wakrah
Recap/highlights: Brazil 1-0 Switzerland – Stadium 974, Doha – 11am
Recap/highlights: Cameroon 3-3 Serbia – Al Janoub Stadium, Al Wakrah
Friday, December 2: Cameroon vs Brazil – Lusail Iconic Stadium, Lusail – 2pm
Friday, December 2: Serbia vs Switzerland – Stadium 974, Doha – 2pm

Group H schedule

Recap/highlights: Portugal 3-2 Ghana – Stadium 974, Doha
Recap/highlights: Uruguay 0-0 South Korea – Education City Stadium, Al Rayyan
Recap/highlights: Portugal 2-0 Uruguay – Lusail Iconic Stadium, Lusail – 2pm
Recap/highlights: South Korea 2-3 Ghana – Education City Stadium, Al Rayyan
Friday, December 2: South Korea vs Portugal (preview) – Education City Stadium, Al Rayyan – 10am
Friday, December 2: Ghana vs Uruguay (preview) – Al Janoub Stadium, Al Wakrah – 10am


Round of 16 schedule

Match 49 – Saturday, December 3: Netherlands vs USA – Khalifa International Stadium, Al Rayyan – 10am

Match 50 – Saturday, December 3:  Argentina vs Australia – Ahmed bin Ali Stadium, Al Rayyan – 2pm

Match 52 – Sunday, December 4: France vs Poland – Al Thumama Stadium, Doha – 10am

Match 51 – Sunday, December 4: England vs Senegal – Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor – 2pm

Match 53 – Monday, December 5: Winners Group E vs Runners up Group F – Al Janoub Stadium, Al Wakrah – 10am

Match 54 – Monday, December 5: Winners Group G vs Runners up Group H – Stadium 974, Doha – 2pm

Match 55 – Tuesday, December 6: Winners Group F vs Runners up Group E – Education City Stadium, Al Rayyan – 10am

Match 56 – Tuesday, December 6: Winners Group H vs Runners up Group G – Lusail Iconic Stadium, Lusail – 2pm


Quarterfinal schedule

Match 58 – Friday, December 9: Winners Match 53 vs Winners Match 54 – Education City Stadium, Al Rayyan – 10am

Match 57 – Friday, December 9: Winners Match 49 vs Winners Match 50 – Lusail Iconic Stadium, Lusail – 10am

Match 60 – Saturday, December 10: Winners Match 55 vs Winners Match 56 – Al Thumama Stadium, Doha – 10am

Match 59 – Saturday, December 10: Winners Match 51 vs Winners Match 52 – Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor – 2pm


Semifinal schedule

Match 61 – Tuesday, December 13: Winners Match 57 vs Winners Match 58 – Lusail Iconic Stadium, Lusail – 2pm

Match 62 – Wednesday, December 14: Winners Match 59 vs Winners Match 60 – Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor – 2pm


Third-place play-off

Match 63 – Saturday, December 17: Losers Match 61 vs Losers Match 62 – Khalifa International Stadium, Al Rayyan – 2pm


Final

Match 64 – Sunday, December 18: Winners Match 61 vs Winners Match 62 – Lusail Iconic Stadium, Lusail – 10am