Paris Saint-Germain vs. Real Madrid
Tuesday, 3 p.m. (CBS3, Univision 65, TUDN)
The midweek afternoon TV lineup on CBS is going to look a little different for the next few weeks. Instead of game shows and talk shows, the big broadcast network is airing UEFA men’s Champions League games.
The opening clash of the round of 16 is one that has the soccer world salivating. Lionel Messi, Kylian Mbappé, and Neymar’s PSG host the team with the boldest, most beautiful trophy case in all of Europe. It’s no secret that Mbappé is young and restless, and that Real Madrid hopes to make a deal to sign him this summer.
Expect the talk about that to be prominent on CBS’s hourlong pregame show before kickoff, starting at 2 p.m. And know that here in Philadelphia, soccer will preempt CBS3′s 4 p.m. local news.
Sporting Clube de Portugal vs. Manchester City
Tuesday, 3 p.m. (Galavisión, Paramount+)
For all the trophies that Manchester City has won under Pep Guardiola, the one it covets the most is the one it still doesn’t have yet. City will throw the house at winning the Champions League this year, especially since it has a 12-point lead atop the English Premier League.
Santos de Guápiles vs. New York City FC
Tuesday, 8 p.m. (FS2, TUDN)
Sixty-six days after last year’s MLS Cup final, a new American club soccer season begins with the Concacaf Champions League’s round of 16.
NYCFC, last year’s MLS Cup champion, opens its CCL campaign by facing one of two teams in the field from Costa Rica. This is Santos’ first appearance in the Champions League after two previous runs in the second-tier Concacaf League.
Santos Laguna vs. Club de Foot Montréal
Tuesday, 10 p.m. (FS2, TUDN)
Thirteen years ago, the team then known as the Montreal Impact launched itself onto the global stage as a second-division club by playing Santos in the Champions League quarterfinals.
This year’s round of 16 clash is the clubs’ first meeting since then. If Montreal can keep the score down in Mexico, it will come home next week with a chance to make more history.
Wednesday, 3 p.m. (CBS3, UniMás, TUDN)
Red Bull Salzburg vs. Bayern Munich
Wednesday, 3 p.m. (Galavisión, Paramount+)
It’s the biggest club game of Brenden Aaronson’s career, and the reason why Salzburg turned down Leeds United’s $27 million bid for him last month. Bayern is the overwhelming favorite, but Salzburg is going to give everything it has to pull off the upset.
If you’re wondering why CBS is showing Inter-Liverpool over the game with an American star, the answer is simple: Liverpool is more popular. (And Inter’s no slouch either.) If that changes someday, CBS will be one of the many TV channels where we find out. But for now, if you were in charge and wanted the biggest audience, you’d make the same choice CBS did.
France vs. Finland
Wednesday, 3:10 p.m. (beIN Sports Xtra)
It used to be that at this time of year, the U.S. women’s national team would bring three of the world’s biggest teams to these shores for the SheBelieves Cup. Over time, some of those teams got tired of flying over here — and realized they could make money hosting their own events.
France was one of the first nations to do that, launching the Tournoi de France in 2020. This year’s edition features these teams plus the Netherlands and Brazil, who kick off the tournament earlier Wednesday (1 p.m., beIN Sports Xtra).
Forge FC vs. Cruz Azul
Wednesday, 8 p.m. (Fox Soccer Plus, TUDN)
Here’s another great Concacaf Champions League underdog story. Forge FC won the Canadian Premier League title, then made a deep enough run in the Concacaf League to qualify for the big stage for the first time. Now it gets to host one of Mexico’s superpowers at the same stadium where Canada’s men’s national team beat the United States in World Cup qualifying.
Also Wednesday in the CCL: Guastatoya (Guatemala) vs. León (Mexico), 6 p.m., and Saprissa vs. Pumas UNAM, 10 p.m. (both FS2, TUDN)
Thursday, 12:45 p.m. (UniMás, TUDN, Paramount+)
Neither of these teams should be in the Europa League right now. But since they are, why not have them seize the world’s attention in a two-game playoff to head to the Round of 16?
» READ MORE: The rest of this week's Europa League schedule
England vs. Canada
Thursday, 2:30 p.m. (Paramount+)
England’s women’s team is another one that didn’t want to play in the SheBelieves Cup anymore. This year, the Lionesses have launched the Arnold Clark Cup, and for their first game are hosting the reigning Olympic champions. Paramount+ has all of the tournament’s games, starting with Germany vs. Spain on Thursday at 9:30 a.m.
Comunicaciones vs. Colorado Rapids
Thursday, 7 p.m. (FS2, TUDN)
After winning last season’s Western Conference regular season title, Colorado starts its first Champions League campaign since 2018 with a trip to Guatemala.
Motagua vs. Seattle Sounders
Thursday, 10 p.m. (FS2, TUDN)
The Sounders are in the Champions League for the seventh time in their 14 seasons in MLS, and once again are the league’s best hope of winning the title. The pieces are there if they can stay healthy: Stefan Frei, João Paulo, Raúl Ruidíaz, Jordan Morris, and newly-signed Designated Player midfielder Albert Rusnák.
United States vs. Czech Republic
Thursday, 11 p.m. (ESPN, TUDN)
Now, finally, here’s the SheBelieves Cup. U.S. manager Vlatko Andonovski has once again called in a young squad, including teenage phenom Trinity Rodman (Washington Spirit) and this year’s top two NWSL draft picks, Naomi Girma (San Diego Wave) and Jaelin Howell (Racing Louisville).
The visitors this year are the Czechs, New Zealand, and Iceland. It’s not much on paper, but Andonovski knows that last November, the Czechs tied the Netherlands and Iceland beat Japan. New Zealand and Iceland kick off the tournament earlier Thursday (8 p.m., ESPN3).
Games on Thursday and Sunday are in Carson, Calif., then the scene shifts to Frisco, Texas, for next Wednesday’s finales.