Weekly football conversation since 2009, with Graham Sibley, Jan Bilton and Terry Duffelen. Listen on Apple, Google, Spotify, Stitcher, TuneIn or your podcatcher of choice.

Weekend Boxset: Chelsea managers, where are they now?

After a spectacular week of Champions League action, the fixture computers have gone easy on those involved. Unless you’re Italian.

Seven great matches to take you from Friday to Sunday. It’s the Sound of Football Weekend Boxset.

All times are UK


Bundesliga: Hertha Berlin v Fortuna Dusseldorf
19.30 on BT Sport 3
Welcome to Fortuna corner. Yes, regular readers will know that for one reason or another F95 have found their way into the boxset for the third straight week. It’s not helping their form to be fair, having not picked up a point in their last two. They lost to their sort of rivals Borussia Mönchengladbach and then to high flying SC Freiburg. One more and we can call it the #curseoftheboxset. If that wasn’t bad enough the club’s being done for copyright infringement. Unluckily for Friedhelm Funkel’s side, they face a team that has finally found form in Hertha. After a great point against Bayern, the Berliners went onto an alarming slump. However the coach Ante Covic leaned on the experience of veteran striker Vedad Ibisevic and thanks to him and some absolute goals from Javairô Dilrosun, Hertha followed up their nervous 2-1 win at home to Paderborn with a 4-0 thumping at Köln. There were high expectations for Covic and his team in the summer. A win on the Rhein and maybe the project is back on schedule. TD


Championship: Fulham v Charlton Athletic
12.30 on Sky Sports Football & Main Event
When these sides last met at Craven Cottage in 2016 the Charlton fan protest against owner Roland Duchatelet was gathering pace. As a fund raiser for the protest, a group of Addicks fans organised a party boat to take a couple of hundred fans up the river across London. It proved so popular they are doing the same this year, only now with Charlton in a much better place than they were then, the profits are going to a local charity, Charlton Upbeats. On current form, this match sees the best team to go down from the Premier League take on the best team to come up from League One. Both sides have shown they can beat anyone in this division but are also more than capable of slipping up. The early kick off and the party boat atmosphere could spring a few more surprises here. GS

Alternative viewing: The BBC are offering not just one but two matches for you to watch instead in this slot. BBC One has coverage of England v Brazil in a women’s international friendly from the Riverside, while on the iPlayer/Red button you can enjoy FA Cup 3rd qualifying round action as Halesowen Town from Step 4 hope to cause an upset as they host Altrincham from Step 2.

Premier League: West Ham United v Crystal Palace
17.30 on Sky Sports Premier League & Main Event
I was surprised that the happy Hammers paid £45 million for Sebastian Haller in the summer. Not because I didn’t think he was worth the money. Far from it. the Frenchman scored 20 goals and assisted 12 in the Bundesliga and Europa League for Eintracht Frankfurt last season. What surprised me was that he didn’t move to a bigger club. Once upon a time, he’d have probably moved to Chelsea, kicked his heels in the reserves for a while before being loaned out to… well, West Ham. So far Haller has proved his worth with three goals in six league games and looks the part in a team that is in fifth place on merit. Had Palace not been saddled with the wage burden of Christian Benteke they might have gone in for Haller. In any event, the Eagles are only a point behind their hosts and with Wilf up to speed after his tedious summer, will make this a close game at the Olympic Stadium. TD

Ligue 1: Montpellier v Monaco
19.00 on BT Sport Extra 3
On the other hand, if Palace are 5-0 up by the time this one kicks off you may as well switch over. ASM are over their bumpy start to the season after overcoming Brest 4-1 which followed a pleasant win over local rivals, Nice. Leonardo Jardim’s second spell is unlikely to be as spectacular and as fun to watch as the great team won the Ligue 1 title and nearly won the Champions League a couple of years back. However, a combination of the rehabilitated Islam Slimani and Wissam Ben Yedder has placed Monaco into mid-table and probably spare the axe for the coach. They take the team jet along the coast to Montpellier who is mid-table and probably only around to serve the narratives of other clubs. Sorry, Montpellier. TD


Premier League: Southampton v Chelsea
14.00 on Sky Sports Premier League & Main Event
Southampton play hosts to everybody’s new favourite team this Sunday. The Saints have had a full week to reflect on how they failed to breakdown a ten-man Spurs side who are currently enduring a collapse as spectacular as a star going full white dwarf. Even the Danny Ings goal came as a result of an error on what was a fruitless and frustrating day for Ralph Hasenhütll’s side. To be fair to them, the injury to Moussa Djenepo, who was brought in to solve their problems up front, hasn’t helped matters. Frank, who will doubtless be flying high following his midweek success against Lille, is threatening to unleash more of his young guns with Callum Hudson-Odoi and Reece James likely to figure. Add to that the England call ups of Tammy Abraham and Fikayo Tomori, we should see a confident, and dare I say, inspiring Chelsea in this one. I do hope so. JB

Premier League: Newcastle United v Manchester United
16.30 on Sky Sports Premier League & Main Event
Usually in this newsletter we choose our matches on the basis that we think the games we select see either or both sides at a stage of their season when things are going their way. Other times we pick games on the basis that both sides are complete car crashes. This is one of those games. If the mood was sour on Tyneside it certainly wasn’t helped by their 5-0 demolition against everyone’s “I knew they’d be dark horses once Brendan Rodgers took over”, Leicester. Steve Bruce’s side have yet to lead at home this season and while they are second from bottom in the early table, they can close the gap on today’s opponents to one point with a win here. OGS’s side are still looking for their first away win, not only this season but in the Premier League since their win at Selhurst Park all the way back in February. All signs point towards a dour, uninspiring, error-strewn draw - but sometimes those conditions can create something entirely unexpected. One thing is for certain, should either side get a win here, it won’t convince anyone they have turned a corner. Enjoy. GS

Serie A: Inter v Juventus
19.45 on Premier 2
The last two managers of Chelsea face off in a battle of the undefeated sides in Serie A. Antonio Conte’s Inter side let a lead slip in their midweek Champions League trip to Barcelona; Luis Suarez scoring twice in a Messi inspired comeback. After a draw at home to Slavia Prague and with Dortmund the other side in this group, progression already looks a daunting task. Domestically everything is looking rosey with six wins from six and only two goals conceded. The biggest headache for Conte in this one is who to play up front, Lukaku is recovering from an injury that kept him out of the Barcelona trip while Alexis Sanchez will definitely miss out having picked up a red card in his first start for Inter last weekend (he did score though). Maurizio Sarri has seemingly recovered from his bout of pneumonia and his Juve side are getting better with him. They too have a tough Champions League group with German (Leverkusen) and Spanish (Atleti) opposition but are making much better progress. Having secured a point in their toughest match, in Madrid, they rolled over the big pharma German side 3-0 in midweek. The Derby d’Italia is always a tight affair but for the first time in a few years this one could shape the rest of the title campaign. GS

Whatever you watch, have a great weekend.

Terry, Graham and Jan

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