Storylines | Pride vs. Washington Spirit

Storylines | Pride vs. Washington Spirit

Hosting the Spirit

In the Pride’s five matches against the Spirit in the city of Orlando, they hold a 3-1-1 record against Saturday’s opposition at home, with the lone loss coming in the Club’s inaugural season in 2016. The Pride have won their last three contests when hosting the Spirit, including a 4-3 victory earlier this season on July 6. Marta scored a brace in that match, including the eventual game-winner in the 78th minute, while Chioma Ubogagu and Rachel Hill each found the back of the net once on the night. 

Back to the Pitch

On Sunday in New Jersey, Orlando Pride forward Sydney Leroux recorded her first NWSL appearance in over a year, entering the match in the 86th minute for Marisa Viggiano. Leroux’s return to the pitch came just three months after giving birth to her second child, daughter Roux, at the end of June. Leroux has scored six goals for the Pride since joining the club ahead of the 2018 season, the leading scorer for the Club last year. Leroux is expected to be available for the Pride’s remaining matches this season. 

Save of the Week (Again)

Orlando Pride goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris earned her fourth NWSL Save of the Week honor following the weekend from her denial of Elizabeth Eddy in the fifth minute of stoppage time to preserve a point for the visiting Pride. The award serves as Harris’ second in the last three weeks and the ninth for the Pride this season, with Haley Kopmeyer receiving the honor five times while Harris was away with the U.S. Women’s National Team at the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup.  

First-Time Finisher

Shelina Zadorsky scored her first professional goal on Sunday, getting on the end of a ball at the far post for the finish. Claire Emslie crossed in a free kick that found the foot of Ali Krieger in the area, who laid it across the area where Zadorsky was there for the score. Krieger was credited with the assist on the goal, her first of the season and her fifth since joining the Pride in 2016. 

Let’s Try This Again

Saturday’s match will serve as a rescheduled contest from Saturday, August 31. The previous date for this weekend’s match was postponed due to the potential impacts of Hurricane Dorian. The match serves as the lone contest in NWSL this weekend due to a FIFA international break. 

Some Missing Pieces

On Saturday against Washington, the Pride will be without five marquee players due to a FIFA international window. 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup Champions Ali Kreiger and Ashlyn Harris will join the U.S. Women’s National Team for two matches as a part of their Victory Tour with games in Charlotte and Chicago over the course of the next week. Australian Alanna Kennedy will head to camp for the Matildas, while Shelina Zadorsky will join the Canadian Women’s National Team for a match against Japan on Sunday, October 6. Marta will also be unavailable as she joins Brazil for two friendlies against England on Saturday, October 5 and Poland on Tuesday, October 8.