Serial shocks for midweek games, especially Premier League and Serie A
MManchester United, where coach Ralf Rangnick has just been appointed, host Arsenal on Thursday in an intercalated Premier League matchday, as AC Milan and Juventus wait at the turn in Serie A after their losses at the weekend latest. All results and rankings read here
England: United to test Arsenal
Eight days after the dismissal of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, Manchester United a new coach: Ralf Rangnick. The 63-year-old German was appointed on Monday on an interim basis until the end of the season. Mancunian fans hope to see at work against Arsenal Thursday during the 14th day of the Premier League, placed in the middle of the week, but his work visa has yet to be finalized.
After their meritorious draw against leader Chelsea (1-1), the Red Devils (8th with 18 points) receive Arsenal on Thursday (9.15 p.m.), who already have a five-point lead. They can not afford missteps, otherwise they will find themselves left behind in the race for the Champions League.
The leading trio, made up of Chelsea, Manchester City (2nd, 29 pts) and Liverpool (3rd, 28 pts), has already made a small hole with the rest of the peloton, relegated to 5 points, with West Ham ( 4th) and Arsenal neck and neck.
Wednesday, the Blues will go to the 16th Watford (8:30 pm) and City (9:15 pm) to Aston Villa (13th), in full rebirth under the orders of Steven Gerrard. Liverpool will make the very short trip to Everton (14th) for the derby (9.15pm).
Newcastle will play an important card in the maintenance race by receiving Norwich (19th). The moment or never to win his first victory of the season for the red lantern, a few weeks after its takeover by a Saudi sovereign fund which undoubtedly dreamed of another type of game at stake.
Spain: Real can increase their lead
In Spain, only one match in the course of this week: after their 2-1 success against Seville FC of Jules Koundé on Sunday for the 15th day of La Liga, Real Madrid receive Athletic Bilbao on Wednesday at the Santiago-Bernabeu in a match in delay of the 9th day.
Karim Benzema’s partners, already qualified for the knockout stages of the Champions League, can in case of victory push back a little more their runner-up, Atlético Madrid, four points behind with also a game late to play (December 22 against Granada). Real Sociedad have the same number of points as the Colchoneros, but have already played 15 games.
As for Athletic Bilbao, current 8th in the Spanish Championship just behind FC Barcelona, he started his season well but has not won for a month (four draws and one loss in the last five games). The Basques come out of a draw in San Mamés against Granada (1-1) on Friday, during which their defending boss Iñigo Martinez was excluded.
Italy: Milan and Juventus in search of redemption
Beaten at home this weekend, AC Milan and Juventus must react on the occasion of the 15th day of Serie A. The Milanese fell against Sassuolo on Sunday (3-1) and left the Neapolitans alone in head three points ahead. Stefano Pioli’s men had already lost at Fiorentina (4-3) on the previous day. Milan goes Wednesday (8:45 p.m.) to a poorly classified, the Genoa (18th), where he will regain his former glory Andriy Shevchenko. The former Rossoneri star striker was appointed coach at the beginning of November and has just won a point from Udine (0-0).
Juventus must also bounce back. Search in the investigation of questionable transfers, 4-0 defeat in C1 against Chelsea and 1-0 in Serie A against Atalanta, Federico Chiesa injured until the truce: clouds are gathering in the sky Turinese. The Bianconeri, only seventh, move to the Salernitana, red lantern Tuesday (8:45 p.m.). Hit to a knee and absent during the last match, Franck Ribéry however carried out specific athletic work in training.
The leader Napoli will have to be wary on Wednesday (8:45 p.m.) of his trip to Sassuolo (12th), a striker from Milan and who had hooked the Neapolitans (3-3) during the last confrontation between the two teams. Inter (3rd) goes to La Spezia (17th).