ORLANDO, Fla. – February 18, 2016 – Zealous fans eagerly anticipating the debut of National Women’s Soccer League's (NWSL) Orlando Pride in Central Florida can mark their calendars.
The Pride will open the 2016 season on Sunday, April 17, with an away match at Providence Park against the Portland Thorns—the former home of forward Alex Morgan and Canadian National Team midfielder Kaylyn Kyle.
Supporters in the state of Florida can join the Pride on Saturday, April 23, for the squad’s first home match at the Orlando Citrus Bowl, facing the Houston Dash. The star-studded match pits FIFA Women’s World Cup Champions, Morgan and goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris, against forward Carli Lloyd and midfielder Morgan Brian of the Dash.
Season tickets for The Pride are currently available starting at $14 per game. To purchase season tickets, fans can call 855-ORL-CITY or visit: www.orlandocitysc.com/pride/tickets. The sale of single-game tickets will be announced at a later date.
The full schedule for Orlando is available www.orlandocitysc.com/pride/schedule.
“This is an incredible moment we’ve all been waiting for,” said Head Coach Tom Sermanni. “A lot of work has already taken place to get where we are, and we are eager for the players’ arrival in a few weeks to start training for this once in a lifetime opportunity to start a professional women’s team from the ground up.”
Morgan, the face of U.S women’s soccer both locally and internationally, joined the Pride in the first round of the 2016 NWSL Expansion Draft. This year, she became the 10th player in USWNT history to score 50 goals and featured in her 100th match for the USWNT in January.
The Pride roster also features a number of players who are no strangers to the sunshine state. In poetic fashion, USWNT Harris and defender Toni Pressley are returning to their childhood stomping grounds. Pressley, a Melbourne, Fla. native, had a stellar career at Florida State University, having been named to the All-ACC Second Team in her freshman year. The criminology major played for the United States’ national youth teams and was part of the under-20 team at the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
The Dash will be looking to FIFA Women’s Player of the Year, Carli Lloyd, who scored a hat trick against Japan in the FIFA World Cup Final, as a main playmaker in the contest.
The 2016 NWSL schedule will completely avoid league play in the regular season during all FIFA dates. In addition, the NWSL will take a 25-day break from Aug. 1 through Aug. 25 during the 2016 Rio Olympic Games in Brazil. The League will play approximately 74 matches prior to the Olympic break and 26 matches following it.