Orlando Pride (4-8-1, 13 points) at Washington Spirit (6-2-5, 23 points)
When: Saturday, 7:00 p.m.
Where: Audi Field, DC
TV: Paramount+ (subscription required)
As the Pride get set to face the Spirit for the third time this season, here are five things to watch for on Saturday night
Last Time Around
The Pride come into the weekend looking to make it back-to-back victories over Washington, having taken a 2-1 win to hand the Spirit its first loss of the season on May 20. That match saw Marta convert from the penalty spot in what served as her first goal since returning from injury, while Kylie Strom would net the eventual game-winner off an assist from the six-time FIFA World Player of the Year in the 77th minute.
In the Nation’s Capital
The Pride’s last visit to Audi Field in NWSL regular season action came on July 17 of last year in a match that resulted in a scoreless draw between the two sides. The draw served as the third-consecutive result on what would turn into a seven-game unbeaten run at the start of then-Acting Orlando Pride Head Coach Seb Hines’ tenure, with former Pride netminder Erin McLeod tallying five saves in the match.
With the start in the last Pride match, Marta recorded her 95th appearance across all competitions for the Pride, becoming the Club’s all-time leader in the category. The previous record was held by former Pride defender Toni Pressley who set the mark at 94 appearances from 2019-22. Marta celebrated the milestone by finding the back of the net from the penalty spot for the Pride in the same match. She now has two goals this season, both of which have come via penalty kick.
World Cup Bound
Pride forwards Marta and Adriana were both called to represent Brazil in the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup. Adriana has recorded one assist and is tied for the most goals scored for the Club with three so far this season. Adriana has also played the second-most minutes on the Pride this season, logging 1,169 minutes. Marta has scored two goals this season, both from the penalty spot. This will also be Marta’s sixth World Cup run with Brazil, entering the tournament with 17 all-time World Cup goals.
The Orlando Pride have signed forward Maliah Morris and goalkeeper McKinley Crone to National Team Replacement Player contracts with the departure of the Brazilian duo. Morris rejoins the Pride after previously signing an Injury Replacement Player contract earlier in the season. During her time with the Pride, she appeared in two matches during the UKG Challenge Cup. Crone has trained with the Pride throughout the season and now has earned her first professional contract since finishing her career at the University of Alabama.
- Defender Haley McCutcheon currently holds 99 regular season appearances, one away from hitting the 100-appearance milestone across her NWSL career.
- Defender Kylie Strom is three appearances away from 50 across her Pride regular-season career.
- Defender Celia is four appearances away from 50 across her NWSL regular-season career.
- Midfielder Erika Tymrak is one goal away from 20 across her NWSL regular-season career.