LOU: Racing Louisville lost 0-1 to the Orlando Pride on the road
CHI: Chicago fell at home, 1-2, to New Jersey/New York Gotham FC
Started From the Bottom...
Louisville and Chicago currently occupy the bottom two spots in the NWSL standings, with a single goal differential point the only thing separating the two teams; each have 4 match points apiece. Both Racing and the Red Stars have their sights set on moving up the table with the result of Friday’s match, in hopes of eventually clinching a playoff berth. In 11th place, a win for Racing Louisville would mean more than improved standing; it would be the club’s first win in 2023. Chicago already has their first 2023 win in the books, but are still searching for their second while sitting in 12th position.
Three current Red Stars are no stranger to Louisville, having previously played for the club. Experienced midfielder Yuki Nagasato joined Racing Louisville for their inaugural season in 2021 after spending 2017-2020 in Chicago before rejoining the Red Stars in 2022. Nagasato totaled 2 goals and 2 assists over 25 appearances for Racing, earning 22 starts. New Red Star, Cheyna Matthews, also took the field in purple during Louisville’s inaugural season, making 11 appearances and scoring one goal prior to signing with Chicago in the 2023 preseason. Red Star, Taylor Malham, is the most recent player to have worn a Racing jersey, signing with Louisville in 2022 before joining Chicago in 2023.
Influential International Names
Red Stars who represent their countries on the international stage have been key playmakers so far in 2023. Most recently, Brazilian national Julia Bianchi and German national Sandra Starke earned their first regular-season starts in Chicago’s last match, Sunday, May 7, against NJ/NY Gotham FC. In Sunday’s faceoff, Bianchi logged her first NWSL assist and tallied 89 touches on the ball, 20 more than any other Red Star. Starke had a shot on goal during her first start, also collecting a perfect passing accuracy in the final third. Additionally, Jamaican international Cheyna Matthews forced an own goal from Kansas City during her first regular season start against the Current Saturday, April 15.