By FRANCO PANIZO
Tim Howard, Everton and Liverpool aren't too far from the relegation zone, and this weekend's Merseyside Derby could determine which team continues to fight for safety for the remainder of the season and which starts to climb the table.
Howard and Everton travel to Liverpool on Sunday in one of the marque match-ups of the weekend. Both teams currently stand level at 25 points (just four above the drop zone), and a win will likely be needed if either team hopes to reach the upper half of the table by the end of the month.
The German Bundesliga returns to action this weekend, and there could be an intriguing battle of Americans in the league's first week back. Hannover 96 takes on Eintracht Frankfurt on Sunday, meaning Steve Cherundolo and Ricardo Clark could square off against one another.
Maurice Edu won't be playing any fellow Americans, but he will want to build on his 23-minute return from a knee injury. Having come off the bench in Monday's Scottish Cup match, Edu could make his way back onto the field for more minutes in Rangers' match versus Hamilton Academical.
Here is a rundown of who the Americans Abroad play this weekend:
Luis Robles and Karlsruhe play SpVgg Greuther Furth.
Sammy Ochoa and Estudiantes Tecos U.A. de G. play Monterrey.
Marcus Hahnemann and Wolverhampton Wanderers play Manchester City.
Stuart Holden and Bolton Wanderers play Stoke City.
Clint Dempsey, Eddie Johnson and Fulham play Wigan Athletic.
Jonathan Spector and West Ham United play Arsenal.
Brad Guzan and Hull City play Barnsley.
Mike Grella and Leeds United play Scunthorpe United.
Zak Whitbread and Norwich City play Cardiff City.
Robbie Findley and Nottingham Forest play Portsmouth.
Conor Doyle and Derby County play Watford.
Frank Simek and Carlisle United play Bristol Rovers.
Jemal Johnson and Milton Keynes Dons play Tranmere Rovers.
Anton Peterlin and Plymouth Argyle play Oldham Athletic.
Maurice Edu and Rangers play Hamilton Academical.
Dominic Cervi and Dundee play Dunfermline Athletic.
Jozy Altidore and Villarreal play Osasuna.
Michael Bradley and Borussia Moenchengladbach play Nurnberg.
Daniel Williams and SC Freiburg play St Pauli.
Jermaine Jones and Schalke 04 play Hamburg SV.
Carlos Bocanegra and St Etienne play Lens.
Charlie Davies and Sochaux play Paris Saint-Germain.
Quentin Westberg and Evian Thonon Gaillard play Vannes OC.
Edgar Castillo and Puebla play San Luis.
Jose Torres, Herculez Gomez and Pachuca play Toluca.
Jonathan Bornstein and Tigres UANL play Necaxa. (Bornstein is out injured.)
Sonny Guadarrama and Atlante play Cruz Azul.
Brad Friedel, Eric Lichaj and Aston Villa play Birmingham.
Tim Howard and Everton play Liverpool.
Ricardo Clark and Eintracht Frankfurt play Steve Cherundolo, DaMarcus Beasley and Hannover 96.
Amaechi Igwe, Edson Buddle and FC Ingolstadt 04 play FC Augsburg.
David Yelldell and MSV Duisburg play VfL Osnabruck.
Expecting Johnson to receive a start this a weekend? Do you see Spector starting and impressing against Barnsley? Think both can parlay solid showings into transfer? How will Castillo and Puebla and Torres, Gomez and Pachuca begin their respective seasons?
Share your thoughts below.