May 30, 2012; Landover, MD, USA; USA midfielder Fabian Johnson (23) and Brazil forward Hulk (20) battle for the ball in the first half at FedEx Field. Brazil won 4-1. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

U.S. Elsewhere: 12/7 Soccer Weekend Preview

The United States players across the pond kicked off already as Hoffenheim suffered a 2-0 to SV Hamburg.  The downward trend continued as Danny Williams was back in his midfield position with Fabian Johnson at left back for Turn- und Sportgemeinschaft 1899 Hoffenheim e.V.  This was their fifth loss in a row and first under Frank Kramer after firing Markus Babbel.  Williams played the first 66 minutes while Johnson went the entire match.

The game was played in spectator silence for the first 12 minutes, 12 seconds as part of the ongoing 12:12 protests by Bundesliga fans.  The silence is a statement against suggested security measures that many feel would infringe of fan culture.  The proposed changes  include reducing the away-support ticket allocation from 10 percent of all tickets to five percent, a ban on away support standing areas, a ban on flares and fireworks in the stadium, and full body scans for all fans.  Clubs are due to sign off on an agreement on December 12.

Here is what else to look for involving U.S. players. 

Jermaine Jones and Schalke take on Stuttgart.  Both are coming off final matches in group play of UEFA tournaments.  Schalke won their group in the Champions League.  Stuttgart lost its final game in group play but still advanced to the round of 32 in Europa League.  The two teams are separated by three points with Schalke in a Champions League qualifying spot.  Stuttgart is the only team in the top nine of the Bundesliga table with a negative goal differential.

The other two German Bundesliga matches that could feature U.S. eligible players occur on Sunday.  Shawn Parker and Mainz host Borussia Mönchengladbach.  Mainz is on a small two game win streak moving them into seventh place after being 15th earlier in the season.  Parker has started two matches and seems to be gaining favor with coach Thomas Tuchel.

Also on Sunday, Hannover and Steve Cherundolo take on Bayer 04 Leverkusen.  Leverkusen is in second place while Hannover has fallen to 12th spot.  Hannover has lost five times over the last seven matches.

In the Barclay’s Premier League, Eric Lichaj, Brad Guzan, and Aston Villa take on Stoke City with Geoff Cameron and Maurice Edu.  Enda Stevens and Joe Bennett are still injured, which should give Lichaj more playing time.  Villa have pulled out of the relegation zone but sit eight points behind Stoke.  Guzan and Cameron should also play large roles in the match, but Edu may not make the 18.

U.S. players face off at Goodison park as well with Tottenham hosting Everton.  Tim Howard and Everton have had a habit of giving points away in the last half of the match and sit three points back of Tottenham.  Brad Friedel started last night’s 3-1 Europa League victory for Spurs, so Hugo Lloris is expected to start.  Clint Dempsey is expected to feature for Tottenham, a side that have won three straight Premier League matches.  Everton have drawn the last three matches, all by a count of 1-1.

Tags: Hoffenheim U.s. Soccer Us Soccer USMNT

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