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April 20, 2019

Red Stars Draw in Thrilling Home Opener Against Portland

A total of eight goals were scored in the home opener

CHICAGO–The Chicago Red Stars made their home opener against the Portland Thorns, coming out of the match with a draw that split the points between the two teams in a heavyweight matchup.

The Thorns opened up scoring with a goal in the 16th minute by captain Christine Sinclair, with Yuki Nagasato equalizing for the Red Stars two minutes later with a goal on a penalty kick. Sam Kerr capitalized off of a one on one opportunity against Emily Sonnett to give Chicago a 2-1 lead. Portland forward Ana-Maria Crnogorcevic tied the game at 2-2 to end the first half.

It was Sinclair who again opened up the scoring in the second half just six minutes in. While it may have been Sinclair running the Portland show and completing her own hat trick, the Red Stars kept U.S. WNT sniper Tobin Heath on her toes and officially snapped her seven-game consecutive point streak dating back to the 2018 NWSL season.

Nagasato notched her first brace of the season while Sam Kerr and Michele Vasconcelos both found the back of the net at crucial game-defining moments.

Key Moments

16th Minute: Portland midfielder Lindsey Horan sets up Christine Sinclair for a sliding shot that sails over Alyssa Naeher’s shoulder into the box, setting off a chain of quick goals in the first half.

18th Minute: Yuki Nagasato wins a penalty shot that gets Chicago on the board for her first goal of the match.

20th Minute: Following Nagasato’s goal for the Red Stars, Chicago takes the lead as Sam Kerr steals the ball from Portland defender Emily Sonnett to score her second goal of the season.

33rd Minute: Portland’s Meghan Klingenberg crosses to Ana Crnogorcevic, who goes for the long pass that bounces past Naeher.

51st Minute: Portland forward Tobin Heath plays the long game with Casey Short before passing back to Meghan Klingenberg, who sends the ball up to Sinclair at Naeher’s doorstep. Naeher dives at the last moment as Sinclair launches the ball past Naeher’s right shoulder.

69th Minute: Mautz clears the ball to Kerr, who crosses to a waiting Julie Ertz. Ertz just misses the post with a diving header.

77th Minute: After tripping over Portland’s captain, Ertz regains her ground to send a long pass over to late substitution Michele Vasconcelos, who evens the score to 3-3 with her first goal of the season sailing straight through the legs of Franch.

87th Minute: Portland takes a 4-3 lead as Sinclair sinks one past Naeher on a penalty kick to complete her hat trick.

90th Minute: Katie Johnson sets up Sam Kerr for a shot, with Nagasato finding the immediate rebounding shot to finish the match with her first brace of the season.

Player of the Match, presented by Magellan

Captain Julie Ertz led the team into a major 4-4 battle and led from the central midfield. Ertz led the team with 54 completed passes, one finding the foot of Michele Vasconcelos who would finish the pass to secure a 3-3 scoreline at the time.

Next Game

Chicago will continue its two-game homestand on Saturday, April 27 against Reign FC at SeatGeek Stadium. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.


Chicago Red Stars vs Portland Thorns FC  April 20, 2019 – SeatGeek Stadium (Bridgeview, IL)

Goals by Half                         1  2  F

Chicago Red Stars                 2 2 4         

Portland Thorns                      2 2 4

Scoring Summary:

POR: Sinclair (Horan), ‘16

CHI: Nagasato, ‘18

CHI: Kerr, ‘20

POR: Crnogorcevic (Klingenberg), ‘33

POR: Sinclair (Klingenberg), ‘52

CHI: Vasconcelos (Ertz), ‘77

POR: Sinclair, ‘87

CHI: Nagasato, ‘90

Misconduct Summary:



CHI: GK Naeher, D Short (Vasconcelos, ‘75), D Davidson, D Naughton, D Wright, M Colaprico (DiBernardo, ‘76), M Ertz ©, M Mautz (Brian, ‘64), F Nagasato, F Johnson, F Kerr

POR: GK Franch, D Klingenberg (Seiler, ‘67), D Sonnett, D Reynolds, D Carpenter, M Boureille (Brynjarsdottir, ‘90), M Horan, M Sinclair (C) , F Heath, F Crnogorcevic (Purce, ‘79), F Foord

All statistics contained in this box score are unofficial.


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