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After a riveting week of Champions League action, this week presents several enticing Premier League and Serie A contests, with European powers battling to qualify for next year's continental tournaments. There's so much to play for and each domestic league tie has escalating consequences attached to it.
West Ham vs. Chelsea
Saturday, April 24 at 12:30 PM | Live stream
It's not a stretch to suggest that Saturday's match is the most important game West Ham has played this millennium, in a clash pitting the East London stalwart against West London rival Chelsea. West Ham hasn't played in the Champions League ever and are locked in a struggle with the Blues for the last automatic bid for next year's tournament. Look for Jesse Lingard to be at his best in this one.
Chelsea is riding high after advancing to the Champions League semifinals as Mason Mount has emerged one of the best young players in Europe this season. There's everything to play for here, with storied West Ham looking to finish off arguably their most successful season since its heyday in the 1960s, while Chelsea wants to avoid being sent to the Europa League.
Arsenal vs. Everton
Friday, April 23 at 3:00 PM | Live stream
It's been a sorely disappointing season for Arsenal, who no longer carry the prestige it once did, but that's not to say it has nothing to play for. Sitting in mid-table, their chances of a European bid hanging in the balance, Arsenal will be looking to gain ground on Everton, who sit three points ahead with a game in hand. Getting a read on the inconsistent Gunners has been almost impossible but Alexandre Lacazette is in fine form, and will be the catalyst towards a much-needed Arsenal victory.
Leeds United vs. Manchester United
Sunday, April 25 at 9:00 AM | Live stream
Leeds has to be content about its return to the Premier League, currently sitting in midtable, safely above the relegation zone. Patrick Bamford has quietly emerged as a star, operating as the team's lone striker, while the team is playing quality football, including a recent draw against Chelsea and a 2-1 win against leaders Manchester City. A win against Manchester United would be a fitting cap to a promising season for the once revered giant.
Manchester United is sitting comfortably in second and is actively awaiting next year's return to the Champions League. For the time being, catching City is almost impossible, so they'll have to settle for unleashing any one of their cabal of gifted attacking midfielders and strikers - perhaps Marcus Rashford and Bruno Fernandes - against a slightly overmatched but resilient Leeds side.
Juventus vs. Parma
Wednesday, April 21 at 2:45 PM | Live stream
It's a tale of two seasons, with two different goals in this clash. Juventus certainly won't catch Inter Milan for the Serie A title but more importantly for the Turin club, the fight for Champions League places is becoming too close for comfort. With several strong sides chasing for a top-four spot, the remainder of the season is a case of self-preservation for Juventus and Cristiano Ronaldo.
Parma, on the other hand, is fighting for its life, sitting in 19th place and in the relegation zone, trying to climb out before it's too late. Taking a point off of Juventus will go a long way, taking three points off The Old Lady could save their season, and perhaps their future in Italian football.
Napoli vs. Lazio
Thursday, April 22 at 2:45 PM | Live stream
Like Juventus, Napoli is angling for a spot in next year's Champions League. Lazio, with a game in hand, trails Napoli by two points, and fourth-place Juventus by four points, with time winding down and each game holding a compound effect of sorts for its combatants.
These are the type of games where you truly earn your wages and Lazio's Ciro Immobile and Napoli's Lorenzo Insigne, both Italian internationals, will be worth paying extra attention to in this pivotal clash.
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