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Local pride at stake in Istanbul and Turin

Published: Friday 21 February 2014, 9.37CET
An Istanbul derby pits third v second, Juventus and Torino FC battle it out for points and Turin pride, and FC Barcelona and Legia Warszawa face tough trips. previews the action.

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Published: Friday 21 February 2014, 9.37CET

Local pride at stake in Istanbul and Turin

An Istanbul derby pits third v second, Juventus and Torino FC battle it out for points and Turin pride, and FC Barcelona and Legia Warszawa face tough trips. previews the action.

Spain: Real Sociedad de Fútbol v FC Barcelona (Saturday 20.00)
Leaders Barcelona may be enjoying a rich vein of form but they will not relish a trip to the Anoeta, where they have not won since May 2007. Unbeaten in their last nine home Liga fixtures, Jagoba Arrasate's side are up to sixth position following a tough start to the campaign and are once again challenging for the UEFA Champions League spots. "We must be strong at the back [against Barça] while looking to play with togetherness in every part of the pitch in order to win," defender Mikel González said. "We will have to play the perfect game."

England: Chelsea FC v Everton FC (Saturday 13.45)
While Chelsea's main title rivals Arsenal FC and Manchester City FC suffered European setbacks this week, José Mourinho's men do not begin their UEFA Champions League knockout bid until Wednesday's trip to Galatasaray AŞ. Before that, the leaders welcome sixth-placed Everton, a team without a win in their last 18 Premier League visits to Stamford Bridge, though they have drawn nine of those. Missing injured striker Arouna Koné and fellow forward Romelu Lukaku, who cannot play against his parent club, Everton manager Roberto Martínez could field towering loan signing Lacina Traoré, saying: "The height and presence he has is something that is going to help us."

Turkey: Galatasaray AŞ v Beşiktaş JK (Saturday 19.00)
Extra motivation is seldom needed for Istanbul derbies, but this encounter has the added spice of bringing together the Süper Lig's third and second-placed sides. Galatasaray have run into some form, losing just one of their last 18 games in all competitions, though their charge stalled last weekend when they were held at lowly Antalyaspor. That allowed Beşiktaş – fuelled by the goals of Hugo Almeida and Olcay Şahan – to move a point above them, but here Roberto Mancini's team have the perfect opportunity to reclaim second spot and keep the pressure on frontrunners Fenerbahçe SK. "Galatasaray have players like Didier Drogba, Wesley Sneijder, Burak Yılmaz and Umut Bulut but I am not scared of them," contended Beşiktaş keeper Tolga Zengin.

Poland: Górnik Zabrze v Legia Warszawa (Saturday 18.00)
One of the Ekstraklasa's oldest rivalries is played out for the 112th time – and not only are Legia 44-40 up in victories, they also head the table, eight points clear of third-ranked Górnik. Last week Legia made a winning start under new coach Henning Berg, beating Korona Kielce to kick off their spring campaign, while Górnik lost 3-0 at Zagłębie Lubin. "We had a plan but everything fell apart after Zagłębie's first goal," coach Ryszard Wieczorek said. "Now we must focus on Legia. The problem is, we have some injuries, but we will try to find good replacements." Górnik should field fit-again ten-goal leading scorer Mateusz Zachara, yet Legia's top marksman Vladimer Dvalishvili is suspended following his dismissal against Korona. Orlando Sa, newly signed from AEL Limassol, could deputise.

Italy: Juventus v Torino FC (Sunday 18.30)
The Bianconeri have been imperious on home soil this term, triumphing in each of their 12 Serie A outings at the Juventus Stadium. Seventh-placed Torino FC will also approach the Derby della Mole high on confidence, with Ciro Immobile and Alessio Cerci having registered 24 times between them – only Fernando Llorente and Carlos Tévez have combined to score more. "We don't want to think about the derby until the last minute," said Torino coach Giampiero Ventura. "It's obviously a special game for us. We face the best team in Serie A, but we'll give it everything."

Netherlands: FC Twente v Feyenoord (Sunday 16.30)
It is second against third at Twente Veste, with visitors Feyenoord seeking to avenge a 4-1 home defeat in their second game of the season. Twente, having lost ground by picking up just one point from two matches, overcame Vitesse last weekend to remain within four of pacesetters AFC Ajax – thus climbing three clear of Feyenoord, held at NAC Breda. Twente coach Michel Jansen believes his squad's youth is the reason for their inconsistency. "Our focus is winning, week in, week out," he said. "But in top-level sport you only learn through ups and downs. They play, recover, train a bit and then have to deliver a top performance again a few days later. That is what it's all about. Are you able to do that physically and mentally, time and again?"

Last updated: 30/05/17 12.43CET