Keys to the Match: Chicago vs. Orlando

We’re two rounds in between Chicago Red Stars and the Orlando Pride and the two games have delivered on every level. Between goals on goals, star power, and more, we are now down to the final games of regular season where rivalries are born.

The two teams are preparing for the final contest between them in 2018, here are the keys to the match:

New Blood to the Roster
The Red Stars that took on Orlando twice in May didn’t have the likes of Morgan Brian, Vanessa DiBernardo and Casey Short. The three veterans have been back in action for Chicago for the second part of the season and given a strong presence to the starting lineup.

Rory Dames mentioned to reporters after a 2-2 against Portland last Saturday that his team “just needs to keep going. We’ve played Orlando twice and the results didn’t go our way, but we are by no means the same team that played Orlando in those two games.”

Competing Against the Best
The race to the end is tight for the teams in the NWSL. With North Carolina, Seattle and Portland clinching three of the four playoff spots, one spot remains. Utah Royals FC, Chicago, Orlando and Houston are vying for the last spot and all are in four points of one another.

Chicago just took on the three teams that clinched, tying all three. The Red Stars played the three games in eight days, but the team performed in all three.

“The biggest thing I’ll take out of this (three games) is we just played the best three teams in the league over the last four games and I would say we had the better of all those games,” said Dames.

Spreading Around the Goals
Orlando has scored 29 goals this season, but their leading scorer Sydney Leroux (6) is expected to miss the game while undergoing concussion protocol. However, Rachel Hill, Marta, Alex Morgan and Chioma Ubogagu have each scored four goals apiece.

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