Keys to the Match: Sky Blue FC vs Chicago Red Stars

CHICAGO — The Red Stars conclude their final road trip of the season against Sky Blue FC on Sunday, September 15. Kickoff from Yurcak Field is scheduled for 4 pm CT live on NBC Sports Chicago and Yahoo Sports. Here are your keys to the match. 

Into the Fire: Both of Chicago’s goals against Sky Blue this season can be credited to their ability to capitalize on the defense’s inability to clear the ball away from danger. Danielle Colaprico intercepted a poor Sky Blue clearance to hit a wonderful shot off the bounce into the far post in the team’s first meeting back in July. A month later, it was the international connection of Yuki Nagasato and Sam Kerr who made Sky Blue pay. Nagasato was able to get her head to the ball before the goalkeeper and sent it towards Kerr, who made no mistake from six yards out for a Chicago goal. 

Local Hero: Kailen Sheridan has been the best player for Sky Blue this season. Her 70 saves in 15 games is an NWSL best and she only concedes an average of 1.2 goals per game. Chicago has tested Sheridan in both games they’ve played this season, but thus far she has been up to the task. She has combined for 12 saves while only allowing two stoppage-time goals against the Red Stars in 2019. 

Tougher than the Rest: Nagasato’s six assists leads the NWSL for the 2019 season. Her ability to create scoring opportunities for Chicago have been on display in both games against Sky Blue this season. Nagasato had a team-high seven key passes and four open play crosses in June’s game. She was equally impressive in the game a month later. Nagasato once again led the team with four key passes and open play crosses, including providing the assist to Kerr’s goal in stoppage time. 

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