CHICAGO — The NWSL prides itself on being the very best of women’s soccer, with Sunday’s matchup between the Chicago Red Stars and the North Carolina Courage a prime example of why. The North Carolina Courage are the reigning champions, coming off a historically dominant season. On the other side is Chicago, featuring the game’s most prolific goalscorer in Sam Kerr.
It seems redundant to say the NWSL’s back-to-back Golden Boot winner is the player to watch, but one just has to look at Kerr’s first-ever game with Chicago as the reason why the Aussie is crucial for the Red Stars Sunday. It took her 37 minutes to make an impact for her new team, scoring the opening goal in the 1-1 draw.
Fast-forward to August, Chicago trailed North Carolina at home with the playoff race heating up. A result would end up being crucial to the Red Stars’ chances of reaching their fourth-consecutive postseason. Vanessa DiBernardo whipped a cross into the 18-yard box that connected with Kerr, who headed in the equalizer and gave Chicago a point on the night.
Kerr has continued to be a premier goal scorer in the 2019 season as well. Week 1 of this season pitted the Red Stars and Courage once again. In the same place where Kerr made her Chicago debut, her goal in the 26th minute was enough to give Chicago a point to open their campaign.
Kerr has scored in three out of the five matches she has played against the Courage since starting her Chicago career, and with the two foes pitted against each other this Sunday, the Aussie will look to make an impact in a big game.