Weekend Wanderings: Aston Villa take on Manchester City in the Carabao Cup Final as Chelsea Women face Arsenal Women and Real Madrid host Barcelona

It’s a weekend of blockbuster fixtures across Europe including cup finals and crucial league encounters.

From the Carabao Cup Final to El Clasico, Alasdair Hooper has everything you can look forward to in this edition of Weekend Wanderings.


Chelsea Women v Arsenal Women (Saturday, 5.30pm)

Source: 90min.com

Saturday’s landmark game is the Continental Cup Final as Chelsea and Arsenal go head to head at the City Ground in Nottingham.

After dropping to third in the WSL, Arsenal’s chances of retaining their league title have taken a hit in recent weeks.

But this game is a chance for Joe Montemurro to add to his trophy collection – and the omens are good for the Gunners. They’ve won this trophy five times since the tournament was formed in 2009.

Of course, while Arsenal’s quality is well documented, so is Chelsea’s, and Emma Hayes side have beaten the Gunners twice already this season.

Can they do it again? All eyes will be on Nottingham to see if they can.


Aston Villa v Manchester City (Sunday, 4.30pm)

Source: LCFC

From one final to another, Aston Villa take on overwhelming favourites Manchester City in Sunday’s Carabao Cup final at Wembley.

Pep Guardiola’s side are undoubtedly the team to beat here and will be more than buoyed after their midweek win over Real Madrid.

For Aston Villa it would appear to be a case of damage control thanks to their poor form in the league, and the small fact that boss Dean Smith claimed some of his squad had played their way out of the cup final line-up last time out.

But despite the financial mismatch, and the disparity with each squad, you can’t write off Villa just yet.

After all we’ve seen stranger results in grand finals at Wembley. Remember Wigan’s FA Cup win over Manchester City?


Real Madrid v Barcelona (Sunday, 8pm)

Embed from Getty Images

To add to the cluster of massive fixtures, Sunday night sees the latest edition of El Clasico.

Except this particular matchup between the two giants of Spanish football has a hint of calamity about it. Despite Barcelona sitting top and Real Madrid lying second not all is well at these two sides.

Whether it’s infighting with the board, and a disappointing result against Napoli in midweek, Barcelona have the slight upper hand here by virtue of their league position.

Real Madrid, meanwhile, lost to Manchester City in the Champions League and also suffered a shock defeat to Levante the weekend before.

But regardless of each other’s form there is still plenty at stake here – whoever wins will end the day top of the table.


Juventus v Inter Milan (Sunday, 7.45pm)

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Speaking of top-of-the-table clashes, Juventus v Inter Milan was already one of the matches top of the billing.

However, recent events in Italy surrounding coronavirus means this game will be played behind closed doors. That will make it utterly intriguing and bizarre.

Away from the extenuating circumstances, this is a game that could also prove pivotal in who comes out on top of Serie A.

Juventus are continuing to stutter under Maurizio Sarri, despite sitting top of the table, although high flying Lazio are just a point behind.

Inter are six points behind Juventus but do have a game in hand after their match was postponed the week before – again because of coronavirus fears.

A win for Antonio Conte’s team will add even more spice to this title race.


Ajax v AZ Alkmaar (Sunday, 7pm)

Embed from Getty Images

Continuing the theme of crucial title clashes, this weekend the Eredivisie’s top two go up against each other.

AZ Alkmaar are looking to become the first side out of Holland’s traditional big three to win the league title in a decade. Currently, the team sitting second are just three points behind table-toppers Ajax.

A win here for AZ Alkmaar would more than keep their title hopes alive, and they have already beaten the defending champions at home this term.

However, Ajax’s home record is outstanding, winning 11 of 12 games in the league. Can AZ Alkmaar cause an upset here?

You can follow Alasdair on Twitter @adjhooper1992

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