Thursday, June 13, 2024
5-Hour Energy

NWSL Preview: Orlando Pride (9-10-1) at Racing Louisville FC (5-6-9)

Lynn Family Stadium | Louisville, Kentucky – Friday, October 6 at 7:30 PM ET

Players to watch:

Despite the club’s recent run of difficult results, the play of goalkeeper Katie Lund has remained outstanding as the shot stopper helps steer her side from in goal. Lund is second in the league in saves (77) behind Houston’s Jane Campbell (78) and still sits tied for fourth in the league in clean sheets (6) behind Campbell (8) first and San Diego’s Kailen Sheridan and North Carolina’s Casey Murphy (7) second.

Orlando forward Adriana scored the only goal of the game against Angel City for her sixth of the regular season ­– tied for the team lead – in addition to a team-leading four assists. The goal was Adriana’s third in the last four games, and she has now either scored or assisted on Orlando’s last five goals going back to the team’s last goal on August 21 vs. Chicago (3 goals, 2 assists).

Match facts: An incredibly entertaining NWSL season enters its penultimate weekend of action with Racing Louisville FC hosting the Orlando Pride to kick off a two-game Friday night. The hosts Louisville are in 10th-place with 24 points from 20 games played and need not only a victory, but some help elsewhere as well to look at qualifying for the NWSL Playoffs. Meanwhile, the visiting Pride are in 7th place but level on points with 6th place OL Reign (28) on the same amount of games played, but are behind in goal differential (+2 vs. -1).

Racing has lost each of its last three games in all competitions, including a 2-0 loss to the Courage in the Challenge Cup Final and failing to score in any of the three. Prior to this stretch, Louisville had never gone three straight matches in all competitions without scoring. The side has also failed to score in five of its eight matches in all competitions since August after being shutout just six times in the 20 games prior this season. Finally, Louisville has created 10.2 expected goals since August while only scoring four, with the 6.2 xG underperformance the league’s largest in that time.

Orlando scored the only goal of the game against Angel City on Monday and have now won all seven games in which it scored first this season. Only one team in NWSL history has finished a season with a perfect record in games when scoring first – Houston in 2014, with only two such games. The Pride also come in on a two-game winning streak, first against Angel City and then a 2-1 home win against North Carolina.

Racing Louisville has scored at least two goals in all three home games against Orlando in all competitions, winning two of those three and drawing the other. Louisville’s average of 2.3 goals per home game against the Pride is its highest average goal output when hosting any single opponent in all NWSL competitions.

Mikey Balhan Sports

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