NWSL Match Preview: Portland Thorns FC vs. Seattle Reign FC at JELD-WEN Field
Portland Thorns FC vs. Seattle Reign FC
Date: Saturday, April 21, 2013
Kickoff: 2:00 p.m. (Pacific)
Location: JELD-WEN Field
Forecast: Partly cloudy, 59 degrees
Radio: Freedom 970
Sunday’s match will feature a distinct Portland flair as Thorns FC features three former standouts from the University of Portland women’s soccer team in forwards Christine Sinclair (2001-02, 04-05), Danielle Foxhoven (2008-11) and midfielder Angie Kerr (2003, 2004-07). For Seattle, defender Elli Reed (2007-10) and midfielder Keelin Winters (2007-10) starred for the Pilots.
U-20 Women's World Cup Reunion
When Portland and Seattle match up on Sunday, eight players from the 2008 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup-winning United States squad could potentially see playing time. Seattle’s Reed, Winters, Christine Nairn and Kiersten Dallstream were members of the 2008 championship-winning U.S. U-20 Women’s National Team, alongside Thorns FC players Alex Morgan, Nikki Marshall, Nikki Washington and Becky Edwards. All except Dallstream were starters in the championship match, a 2-1 win against North Korea, in which Morgan scored and Marshall earned Woman of the Match honors.
Buckle Down Defense
Following the opening weekend of NWSL matches, Thorns FC rank second in the league in fewest shots on goal allowed, conceding just three against FC Kansas City in the first-ever match of the NWSL on April 13. The only other team to allow fewer shots on goal in Week 1 was the Chicago Red Stars (1 shot on goal allowed vs. Seattle). Despite being outshot 10-7 during the season-opening draw, Thorns FC finished with the advantage in shots on goal with a 4-3 edge on FC Kansas City. Through Week 1, Portland also ranks tied for third in the league in fewest shots allowed (10). Only Chicago (3) and FC Kansas City (7) conceded fewer shots, while Washington also allowed 10 shots.