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The weekend is upon us and we're primed for more glorious football action! I'm James Benge, ready to guide you through the best games to keep an eye out over the coming days... as well as to recap what have been a crazy few days on and off the pitch. Let's get into it:

📺 Footy fix

All times U.S./Eastern

Friday, Nov. 24
🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 WSL: Chelsea vs. Manchester City, 2:15 p.m. ➡️ Paramount+
🇮🇹 Serie A: Inter vs. Salernitana, 3 p.m. ➡️ Paramount+

Saturday, Nov. 25
🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 Premier League: Brentford vs. Liverpool, 7:30 a.m. ➡️ USA
🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 Premier League: Manchester City vs. Chelsea, 12:30 p.m. ➡️ NBC
🇮🇹 Serie A: Atalanta vs. Sassuolo, 2:45 p.m. ➡️ Golazo NetworkParamount+

Sunday, Nov. 26
🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿 Premiership: St. Johnstone vs. Rangers, 7 a.m. ➡️ Paramount+
🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 Premier League: Luton Town vs. Manchester United, 11:30 a.m. ➡️ USA Network
🇮🇹 Serie A: Monza vs. Milan, 2:45 p.m. ➡️ Golazo Network, Paramount+

⚽ The Forward Line

👋 At last, Mbappe makes his PSG decision

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Better late than never. Kylian Mbappe reached a conclusion on Thursday afternoon that had seemed inescapable to most of the football world for years. If he was to fulfil his prodigious talents it would have to be away from Paris Saint-Germain, who he informed yesterday that he would be leaving. Come the end of the season he will be out of contract, free to move where he wants.

The biggest free agency moment in the sport's history should have prompted a flurry of speculation, links with a dozen or more clubs who would surely move heaven and earth to secure Mbappe: record scorer in World Cup finals, three time World XI member, scorer of well over 300 career goals only a few weeks into his 25th year. However, as Pardeep Cattry lays out, there really is not much tension around these negotiations. He seems destined for the Santiago Bernabeu.

  • Cattry: "Whether or not Mbappe will end up at Real Madrid will most likely come down to contract negotiations rather than anything intangible outside of that, but the club have won the vibes battle in the public sphere. Real Madrid have always been good at positioning themselves as a super club, and so landing the game's biggest superstar is something they have always argued just feels right."

The rest of the game seems to agree with that view. Arsenal, for instance, have plenty to offer Mbappe. They coveted him even before he left Monaco, could allow him to follow in the iconic footsteps of Thierry Henry all while competing for Europe's biggest honors. Mikel Arteta, however, made clear on Friday morning that he did not really expect his club to be in the race. "When there is a player of that calibre we always have to be in the conversation," he said, "but it looks a different way."

And so after so many years of will he, won't he, might this finally be the year, Mbappe is finally off and it's all so underwhelming. What is left to debate? Whether Madrid might try to lowball him on the salary given that he has so few other options? Whether the Public Investment Fund might go even crazier than last year, when we broke news of a billion dollar offer from Al-Hilal? There have been enough twists and turns in the Mbappe saga that it would be wise not to rule anything out, but really we knew how this story was ending a long, long time ago.

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🔗  Midfield Link Play

🇩🇪 Thomas Tuchel's worst week isn't over yet

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A week ago suggesting that Thomas Tuchel might be fighting to stay in his job at Bayern Munich would have seemed faintly mad. Yes, he was in an insecure position for any coach at Saberner Strasse -- that being not top of the Bundesliga -- but this was a team blitzing all bar one of Germany's top 18, setting ludicrous tallies for goals scored, goal difference, expected goals scored. They were a real contender for the Champions League and seemed a fair bet to crush Bayer Leverkusen's dreams before too long.

Then Tuchel got out tacticed at the Bay Arena, thinking he was matching up with Xabi Alonso's flying wingbacks only to discover that Leverkusen had opted to hold Jeremie Frimpong in reserve. The Bundesliga title might have become a longshot, but no worries, the Champions League was around the corner, a favorable draw with Lazio giving the Bayern boss a chance to remind skeptics of his qualities in this competition. Instead the 1-0 loss in Rome was the blueprint of a bad day for Tuchel's team: cautious possession meandering to nowhere, one individual error at the back defining a game where Bayern were too cautious. 

Now there are reports in Germany and beyond that Tuchel is fighting to keep his job, that further dropped points against 14th placed Bochum could prompt a swift decision from the Munich hierarchy. Based not only on their talent, but also their performances in every week of the season before the last one, there should not be that much for Bayern to worry about this week. They are putting up an average of not far off three expected goals per game, conceding just one. They are overwhelming favorites in every domestic game not against Leverkusen and are more than capable of blowing Lazio away in next month's second leg. Fail to do so, however, and they may be looking for another new manager. 

🔗  Top Stories

😲 The Mbappe fallout: We've got all sorts of coverage off the back of Mbappe's announcement. From breaking down the confirmation that PSG's star forward is out to trying to work out where he might be landing, we've got you covered.

📚 UCL week one: There's so much more to break down from Wednesday's Champions League matches. The pick of our content: How Tuchel's tactics fell to pieces, Thomas Muller's reaction to defeat in Rome and Luis Enrique's struggles for consistency even in PSG's win.

🏆 Thursday nights feel right again: The Europa League and Conference League returned with style and goals, goals, goals. Ruben Loftus-Cheek became the first Milan midfielder to score a brace in Europe since Kaka but afterwards all the talk was about Christian Pulisic (Nigel Reo-Coker is right, the USMNT international needs to do more).

🇰🇷 Klinsmann out: In news that will shock absolutely no one who saw his South Korea side in action (nor many who are aware of where he was doing his coaching from), Jurgen Klinsmann has been sacked as head coach of the Taegeuk Warriors.

🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 Hodgson taken to hospital: Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson was admitted to hospital on Thursday on the advice of the club's medical staff. He will miss the weekend's game against Everton at a time when there is much speculation over his future at Selhurst Park.

🇺🇸 Krieger on Kickin' It: Two-time Women's World Cup winner Ali Krieger was the latest guest on Kickin' It and talked about her recent retirementincoming USWNT head coach Emma Hayesthe team's next generation and using soccer as a distraction during her divorce.

💵 UCL deal: As UCL returns make sure to check out our Paramount+ special one-month extended free trial with promo code GOAT.

💰  The Back Line

💵 Best bets

  • Premier League: Tottenham vs. Wolverhampton Wanderers, Saturday, 10 a.m.
    💰 THE PICK: Tottenham to score in 76th minute or later (+120)
     -- Spurs come into this on an almighty hot streak in front of goal, having scored in their last 36 Premier League games. Ange Postecoglu's side are not afraid to keep their supporters waiting, however, and have racked up five goals in the final 15 minutes of league games since the start of December. Wolves have conceded 11 late on too. Expect drama till the death.
  • Ligue 1: Lyon vs. Nice, Friday, 3 p.m.
    💰 THE PICK: Alexandre Lacazette anytime and match to be drawn (+750) -- The crisis club in Ligue 1 for much of this season, Lyon have turned a corner of late and look like a side who could give any team a challenge, particularly now that Alexandre Lacazette has donned his shooting boots. OL may not have enough to down the second best team in France but this could be a real test for Nice, one where they don't get all three points.

📺 What's on CBS Sports Golazo Network

☀️ Morning Footy (Weekdays 8-10 a.m.): Hosts Susannah Collins, Charlie Davies, Nico Cantor and Alexis Guerreros help fans get their day started on the network's flagship morning show with highlights, interviews and the biggest soccer storylines. Morning Footy is also available in podcast form, so you'll never have to miss an episode.

📦 Box 2 Box (Weekday afternoons): The news-driven show quickly recaps all the latest headlines from around the world with panelists previewing the top matchups of the day. Catch Box 2 Box on CBS Sports Golazo Network on the CBS Sports app, PlutoTV and Paramount+. 

3️⃣ Attacking Third (Monday, Wednesday and Friday evening): The leading women's soccer podcast and social brand is now a live studio show. Just because the NWSL season is over doesn't mean that our coverage of the women's game is going anywhere. Our analysts will be breaking down the USWNT. NWSL offseason and European domestic season all winter long.

👟 Kickin' It (Tuesday nights): CBS Sports Golazo Network's new unfiltered interview show is back. Hosted by Kate Abdo, Clint Dempsey, Mo Edu and Charlie Davies, the group chat candidly with the biggest names from the Beautiful Game and share their stories from on and off the pitch. 

⚽ Call it What You Want (Monday night): A weekly podcast where Jimmy Conrad, Jesse Marsch and Charlie Davies cover all things USMNT and the state of the beautiful game in the United States.

🥅 Scoreline (Daily): Scoreline is the newest place for fans to catch up on all the biggest news and results impacting global football, match highlights from the top soccer competitions and all the can't-miss goals from the day's action, starting Thursday and airing seven days a week.

📺 How to watch: CBS Sports Golazo Network is a free 24/7 channel exclusively dedicated to offering unparalleled coverage of all the top soccer competitions worldwide. You can stream for free on the CBS Sports appPluto TV and Paramount+.