The Red Stars have found themselves in a slump as of late, having dropped the last three of their matches during this World Cup portion of the NWSL schedule. Chicago are also on a goalless streak having not scored in their last three matches. A recent trade for Savannah McCaskill gave the Red Stars some new offensive options, a new challenge awaits them on the road.
Where We Last Saw Them
This both team’s first match against each other for this year. Orlando Pride and Chicago Red Stars last faced each other last season on August 25. It was a game with playoff positioning on the line for both teams. The Red Stars won 3-1, thanks to goals from Sam Kerr and Vanessa DiBernardo. The win launched Chicago into playoff positioning and essentially eliminating Orlando from the NWSL playoffs.
Starting Lineup We’d Like To See
Sam Kerr is back in town. Chicago rolled out with a strong starting lineup against Reign FC, and despite not getting the win, we are likely to see a similar lineup against Orlando if Kerr is on restricted minutes by coaches decision. McCaskill has provided an attacking mindset in front of goal while building pressure on goalkeepers. Chicago will need more of that to help open up their goal scoring.
Keys To The Match
Establish momentum early: Orlando are sitting in the bottom half of the table alongside the Red Stars but have been sitting there since the beginning of the season. While it’s new waters for Chicago, Orlando have gotten results in their last two matches giving them some minutes and games to build on. Chicago will want to establish their possession early, and try to shoot often.
A Shut Out: Yes there is a story right now about how and why the Red Stars aren’t scoring. However, a team that has often prided itself on defense is still searching for a shut out for their back up keeper. Emiliy Boyd has come up big for her backline but is still searching for the shut out, and the Red Stars backline will want to make sure this is the game to earn it.
Players to watch
Chicago Red Stars: Yuki Nagasato and Savannah McCaskill. Both players were strong in the final third for Chicago last week.
Orlando Pride: Marta is back but it’s unknown if she is fit and can play. So we will go with another legend, Joanna Boyles.
How To Watch
Kickoff: Sunday June 30, 4 p.m. CT in Orlando, FL
TV: NBC Sports Chicago
Stream: NBC Sports App, Yahoo Sports
Some goals will be scored and a win will be earned!
What do you think of the Red Stars’ recent skid? Will they end things in Orlando? Who do you want to score? Make sure you leave your thoughts in the comments below!