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Best Bets Jan. 8/9: What to watch

SUNDAY, JAN. 8

  • TELEVISION

ENGLISH F.A. CUP

Manchester United at Manchester City

Fox Soccer Channel and Fox Deportes, 5 a.m.

England's two best clubs face off in their openers in the world's oldest (and most prestigious domestic) soccer tournament, and second-place United wants to make a statement after October's 6-1 loss to EPL leader City. Alex Ferguson caused waves by saying the Blues aren't playing the best soccer in the country at the moment, but he has a point. In the two games before Tuesday's 3-0 win over Liverpool, City was shut out in a tie at West Brom and loss at Sunderland. Replays: Fox Deportes, 9:30 a.m.; FSC, 8 p.m.

Also

Sunderland at Peterborough United, Fox Soccer Plus, 7:25 a.m. and 5 p.m.

MEXICAN PRIMERA DIVISION

Atlas at Puebla

ESPN Deportes, 10 a.m.

DaMarcus Beasley and the Camoteros open their Clausura campaign against an Atlas side that needs points in its fight against relegation. That makes this a key game for Tijuana.

Also

Estudiantes Tecos at Toluca, Univision (KMEX/Channel 34), 10 a.m.

SPANISH LA LIGA

Barcelona at Espanyol

ESPN Deportes, 12:25 p.m.

The world's greatest team sits second in Spain's top division, three points behind Real Madrid. Their crosstown rival Espanyol is a .500 club, just two points (and two places) out of a European spot. Replay: 6 p.m.

Also

Sporting Gijon at Real Betis, GolTV, 10:45 a.m., 7 p.m. and midnight

Valencia at Villarreal, ESPN Deportes, 2:30 p.m.

Italian Serie A

Cesena at Udinese, Fox Soccer Plus, 3:25 and 9:30 a.m. and 1 a.m.

AC Milan at Atalanta, Fox Deportes, 7 a.m.; Fox Soccer Channel, 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.

Napoli at Palermo, Fox Soccer Channel, 11:30 a.m. and midnight; Fox Deportes, 11:30 a.m.

MONDAY, JAN. 9

  • TELEVISION

ENGLISH F.A. CUP

Leeds United at Arsenal

Fox Soccer Channel and Fox Deportes, 11:30 a.m.

Thierry Henry, the greatest scorer in Arsenal's long, rich history, returns to the Gunners on loan from the New York Red Bulls in time for a third-round clash. Replay: FSC, 5 p.m.

  • ON LOCAL FIELDS

MEN'S/WOMEN'S FRIENDLIES

Fullerton Rangers vs. FC Hasental, 3:45 p.m.

Canadian national team vs. Los Alamitos Vikings, 7 p.m.

Titan Stadium (Cal State Fullerton)

So Cal's newest NPSL team, from Fullerton, stages a doubleheader, with the Rangers taking on a league rival in the opener and a WPSL side from Los Al helping Canada's Olympic qualifying preparations in the nightcap.