Photo by Michael Janosz/ISIphotos.com
Whether high-stakes regional play, league play or international club friendlies piques your interest, Wednesday's selection of games being played in the United States has you covered.
Between two MLS teams vying for a place in the CONCACAF Champions League group stage, three MLS mid-week battles and a World Football Challenge match involving Barcelona, it's a big night for soccer in this country.
Here's a closer look at Wednesday's soccer schedule:
CONCACAF CHAMPIONS LEAGUE
FC Dallas vs. Alianza FC
TV: Fox Soccer Channel, 8 p.m.
At stake: A berth in the CCL group stage in Group C along with Toronto FC, Pumas UNAM and Tauro.
Last time they met: FC Dallas took a 1-0 result in El Salvador to seize the advantage in both aggregate goals and away goals. Jackson came up huge with a 70th-minute winner, and FCD should come out strong to try and put the tie away early to keep its continental dreams alive.
Seattle Sounders vs. San Francisco
TV: Fox Soccer Channel, 10 p.m.
At stake: A berth in the CCL group stage in Group D along with Monterrey, Comunicaciones and either Herediano or Alpha United.
Last time they met: The Sounders turned in an underwhelming performance but managed to walk away with a manageable 1-0 deficit heading into the return leg. With a match in front of its raucous supporters looming, the Sounders need to come up with a more inspired showing to avoid an embarrassing early exit.
MAJOR LEAGUE SOCCER
Sporting Kansas City vs. Real Salt Lake
TV: MLS Direct Kick/MatchDay Live, 8:30 p.m.
Intriguing because: Sporting Kansas City hasn't lost in 13 matches and has yet to fall at Livestrong Sporting Park; RSL is coming off a rare home loss and gets striker Alvaro Saborio back from suspension; Both teams will be without key centerbacks (SKC – Aurelien Collin; RSL – Jamison Olave), meaning that opposing attacks could be primed for success.
Chicago Fire vs. Philadelphia Union
TV: MLS Direct Kick/MatchDay Live, 9 p.m.
Intriguing because: It's Philadelphia's first game since Carlos Ruiz' departure; it marks Union coach Peter Nowak's return to Chicago, where he won an MLS Cup as a player; The Fire will showcase new signings Sebastian Grazzini and Pavel Pardo.
Portland Timbers vs. Los Angeles Galaxy
TV: ESPN2, 10:30 p.m.
Intriguing because: Despite losing some of its early-season luster, Jeld-Wen Field is still one of the top atmospheres in all of MLS; The Galaxy are on a 14-game unbeaten run and could get caught looking ahead to this weekend's anticipated showdown with FC Dallas; The last time they met, Landon Donovan scored twice in a 3-0 romp.
WORLD FOOTBALL CHALLENGE
Barcelona vs. Chivas de Guadalajara
TV: ESPN2/ESPN3.com/Galavision, 8 p.m.
Intriguing because: Chivas put up a fight against Real Madrid and will hope to do the same against Barcelona; Whenever the defending UEFA Champions League winners play, it's typically must-see TV; The teams should draw pretty well at Miami's Sun Life Stadium.
Which games are you looking forward to the most? How do you see Wednesday's matches unfolding?
Share your thoughts below.