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TV PREVIEW: International weekend headliners
by Paul Kennedy, September 28th, 2007 11:36AM



Bernd Schuster returns to Getafe Sunday for the first time since leaving the small Madrid club to coach Real Madrid in the summer.

The German led Getafe to its greatest successes in its history, but without him it has sunk to next to last in La Liga with only two points in five games under Dane Michael Laudrup.

For Getafe, the Real Madrid game is a great chance to jumpstart its season. It's had success against the Merengues, who have earned only one tie in three trips to the Coliseo Alfonso Perez.
"We are not playing well," said Getafe striker Manu del Moral. "But we usually manage to raise our game against Madrid, and that's what we will have to do on Sunday."

GOLTV, GETAFE-REAL MADRID, Sunday (live), 1 pm ET.

Bayer Leverkusen has won four games in a row and has a chance to tie unbeaten leader Bayern Munich when they meet Saturday in a battle of the Bundesliga's 1-2 teams.

The young Leverkusen team, which trails Bayern by three points, struggled to beat Nuremberg, 2-1, on Wednesday and will face its toughest challenge of the season against star-studded Bayern. "We will have to improve or we don't stand a chance," Leverkusen coach Michael Skibbe said.

Miroslav Klose's hat trick on Wednesday in a 5-0 demolition of Energie Cottbus gave him eight goals in seven games. "You can only shine when the team functions together, and that's the case at the moment," Klose said. "It's best not to speak about these things too much or we'll lose the high."


Inter Milan drew even with Roma at the top of Serie A on Wednesday, and the defending champions will pull ahead if they win on Saturday at the Olympic Stadium in Rome.

Sweden Zlatan Ibrahimovic has been in fine form for Inter, scoring two goals for the second time this season in the Nerazzurri's 3-0 win over Sampdoria on Wednesday. "Zlatan is someone who can decide when he wants to score goals," Inter coach Roberto Mancini said, "because with the skill and physical strength he has, defenders can't stop him."

Mancini wants Inter to stay withing reach of Roma until the return of Marco Materazzi, Patrick Vieira, Christian Chivu and Maicon next month from either injury or suspension. "Then," he added, "if we're actually leading the standings, things could get very interesting, also because the squad is getting better game by game."

FOX SOCCER CHANNEL, ROMA-INTER MILAN, Saturday (delay), 2:30 pm. ET.

Obafemi Martins' importance to Newcastle United grows as Michael Owen is again sidelined. The Nigerian forward had a solid first year with the Magpies, leading them with 11 goals, but he has yet to find his magic touch this season.

Martins has only two goals in six English Premier League games heading into Saturday's game at Manchester City, but Newcastle manager Sam Allardyce is confident that Martins will step up his game in Owen's absence.

"Oba was disappointed with the last two games," Allardyce said of missed chances against West Ham and Arsenal, "but chances come and go, and strikers score some and miss some."


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