Weekend football preview: Limping Barca take on Atletico, Liverpool take on Man City

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After an interesting midweek of Champions League action, the teams return to their domestic competitions with big in-store clashes.

A look at what’s going on in European football this weekend:

Spain

Ronald Koeman could face his last game in charge of Barcelona as the club face a tough trip with defending champions Atlético Madrid.

The Dutch manager is under extreme pressure after Barcelona have followed an embarrassing string of Champions League defeats, and the Spanish press is buzzing with rumors he could be sacked regardless of the outcome.

Koeman won’t be in the dugout as he serves the second of a two-game suspension for protesting. This match will be striker Antoine Griezmann’s first since loaning cash-strapped FC Barcelona to return to Atlético.

Real Madrid may be well placed at the top of the La Liga table, but their last two games – a draw against Villareal and a shock defeat to Sheriff Tiraspol in the Champions League – have rocked the team. On Sunday they will face Espanyol, who have collected just six points in seven games this season.

Atletico Madrid vs Barcelona – 12:30 p.m., Sunday

Espanyol vs Real Madrid – 7.45pm, Sunday

England

The last two English football champions, Liverpool and Manchester City, will face off at Anfield in what should be a crack game. The two teams currently occupy the first two places in the standings.

There are a few injuries for Jurgen Klopp’s side, including right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold and pair of midfielders Thiago and Harvey Elliott. Pep Guardiola has a full squad to choose from.

The teams enter the weekend after contrasting Champions League outings – Liverpool beat Porto 5-1 and City lost to PSG 0-2. Liverpool are currently undefeated in the league.

For the third time this season, Manchester United take part in the Saturday lunchtime game as Everton heads to Old Trafford. It’s another quick turnaround for United, who were in action in the Champions League on Wednesday when Cristiano Ronaldo’s late goal won a 2-1 win over Villareal.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side lost last weekend in the league in a weak performance against Aston Villa.

It will be a tough test against Rafa Benitez’s side, who could overtake United with a win.

Five teams are winless after six appearances for the first time in the English Premier League since 1964: Newcastle, Leeds, Southampton, Burnley and Norwich.

Manchester United vs Everton – 5 p.m., Saturday

Liverpool vs Manchester City – 9 p.m., Sunday

Italy

Struggling in Serie A, Juventus face Turin in a derby seeking to build on their Champions League victory over Chelsea.

Returning Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri had been slow to make Federico Chiesa the center of his attack, but the Italy international was given the default job against Chelsea following the injuries of Paulo Dybala and by Alvaro Morata.

Chiesa responded by scoring against Chelsea in an exceptional performance and he is expected to play a major role again against Turin.

The other big game of the week is AC Milan against Atalanta. The Milan giants have started the season well under Stefano Pioli, dropping just two points in their first six games.

Atalanta, meanwhile, have yet to discover their usual scoring form, sitting in seventh place in the Serie A table.

Atalanta got the better of Milan in the last few meetings.

Turin vs Juventus – 9:30 p.m., Saturday

Atalanta vs AC Milan – 12:15 am, Monday

Germany

Borussia Dortmund are again without injured striker Erling Haaland as they host Augsburg in the Bundesliga eighth round.

The Norwegian striker’s side have been sorely missed by the Norwegian striker in the two games he’s been absent from: a 1-0 loss to Borussia Mönchengladbach last weekend, followed by an unimpressive 1-0 victory over Sporting Lisbon in the Champions League on Tuesday.

Dortmund vs Augsburg – 7 p.m., Saturday

Bayern Munich vs Eintracht Frankfurt – 9 p.m., Sunday

(With PTI entries)

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