Orlando Pride

Feels like home: What to watch for when the Orlando Pride take on Gotham FC for the first time this season


The first of four matchups this season: Orlando Pride vs NJ/NY Gotham FC

When: Saturday, 7:00 p.m.

Where: Exploria Stadium, Orlando, FL

TV: Paramount+

As the Orlando Pride prepare to return to Exploria Stadium for the first time in two weeks, here are six storylines to watch during Saturday's matchup against Gotham:

1. A Familiar Foe 

Over the Pride’s history, meetings with Gotham FC have historically been the most even matchup amongst any opponent. The two sides hold a 7-7-5 all-time record, each holding an even seven wins all-time. Additionally, the two sides are set to meet four total times this year, with Gotham in the Pride’s NWSL Challenge Cup group, along with Washington and North Carolina. On Thursday it was announced that UKG will be providing a $1 million prize to the 2023 Challenge Cup winner.

2. Shine Bright Like A Messiah

Forward Messiah Bright recorded her first professional goal in the Pride’s last match against Angel City FC. Bright came on as a first-half substitute due to an injury suffered by Julie Doyle and later found the back of the net in the 51st minute. Bright received the ball and was able to fend off two Angel City defenders and calmly slot the ball into the bottom corner of the net.

3. Gator Hall of Famer

Pride midfielder Erika Tymrak notched an assist on the Bright goal against Angel City in the Club’s last match. It counted as the first assist of the season for the University of Florida alumna, who also led the side in assist last year. A few days prior to the match, it was announced that Tymrak would be inducted into the UF Athletic Hall of Fame as part of the 2023 Class. Tymrak recorded 32 goals and 40 assists, which still shares No. 3 all-time for the Gators, to go along with three SEC titles in her four-year career as a Gator.

4. Moor Saves, Moor Records

With her late penalty save on Angel City’s Claire Emslie, Anna Moorhouse became the fifth different Pride goalkeeper to save a penalty in NWSL action since the Club’s inception in 2016. The Pride now have a league-high eight stops in total across five goalkeepers during that span. The penalty save was also the first PK save by any NWSL goalkeeper this season.

5. No Days Off

The Pride are coming off an international which saw a few of their players represent their respective countries in the buildup to the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup coming this summer. Forward Adriana got the start and went the full 90 minutes for Brazil in a 2-1 victory over Germany. Forward Amanda Allen spent the break with the Canadian National Team as they played a friendly against France and fell 2-1. Forward Haley Bugeja represented her home country, Malta, over the break and helped earn her squad a 2-1 victory over Estonia with a goal in the match.

6. Remembering Watt Happened

In the last matchup between these two sides, the Pride strolled out of Subaru Park with a 2-1 victory over Gotham, backed by a 49th minute goal from defender Celia and a 73rd minute strike by forward Ally Watt. The match served as Watt’s debut with the Pride after being acquired via trade just five days earlier, scoring just nine minutes into her first appearance for Orlando. Defender Haley McCutcheon also made her debut with the Pride after being required days before the game, as well.

Milestone Tracker

  • Erika Tymrak is seven appearances away from 175 across all NWSL competitions, and seven from 50 with the Pride. 
  • Haley McCutcheon is 11 appearances away from 100 in the regular season across her NWSL career.
  • Marta is one appearance away from 75 in the regular season, and three goals from 30 scored.