The sporting week ahead (03/04/11)

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The Independent Online

Today

Big game for brilliant Blackpool (everyone's favourite second team) at Fulham, while thousands of Carlisle fans have travelled down to Wembley for their Johnstone's Paint Trophy showdown with Brentford.



Tomorrow

QPR v Sheffield United is important at both ends of the table, and the university cricket matches come to an end as the diehard fans warm up for the start of the county season.



Tuesday

Spurs supporters will probably be pinching themselves all the way to the Bernabeu and back as they play the mighty Real Madrid in the first leg of their Champions' League quarter-final. The other game is Inter v Schalke.

Wednesday

Another mighty night of European Cup football as Chelsea do battle with Manchester United. At the Nou Camp, Barcelona host Shakhtar Donetsk.



Thursday

Now that the English clubs are out, the Europa League officially DOES NOT MATTER. Something that does is the US Masters at Augusta. You know spring is really here when you hear talk of Alliss, Azinger and the azaleas.



Friday

Hand-warmers at the ready as the county cricket season officially begins. My personal tip for the title (which they have been every year since 1950) are Lancashire, who start at one of their outgrounds, Liverpool, against Peter Moores' former charges Sussex. Meanwhile, the PFA will announce their awards nominees.



Saturday

Tony McCoy attempts to defend his Grand National crown. Elsewhere, there is something for everyone – Chelsea v Wigan and Man U v Fulham in football; Leinster v Leicester in the Heineken Cup; Malaysia Grand Prix qualifying and round three of the Masters.

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