With just 10 games left in the regular season, the Washington Spirit face a tough task as it hosts the third-place Chicago Red Stars Saturday at 7 p.m. ET at the Maryland SoccerPlex.
Last week, the Spirit fell short-handed in the first half against the North Carolina Courage after defender Paige Nielsen received a red card in the 24th minute. The ejection carries a one-game suspension, meaning she will sit out against Chicago.
Washington needs a bit of a refresh after dropping points in six of the last seven games, but the task won’t be easy against the Red Stars, who are led by proven goalscorer Sam Kerr. The Australian forward has a league-high 12 goals this season.
Chicago (8-5-2, 26 points) visits m the Spirit (6-5-3, 21 points) on a four-game winning streak. It will be up to Spirit rookie Sam Staab to shut down the speed and strength that comes with a player like Kerr.
Both teams have players returning from the United States women’s national team this week following its 3-0 win over the Republic of Ireland in the first game of the World Cup victory tour.
Goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher and midfielder Julie Ertz are available Saturday for the the Red Stars, while defender Tierna Davidson and midfielder Morgan Brian are questionable with thigh injuries.
Standout midfielder Rose Lavelle will likely start for the Spirit. Meanwhile, forward Mallory Pugh, who traveled to Los Angeles with the national team, will not be in the lineup due to a hip injury.
#WASvCHI injury report
OUT: Nielsen (suspension), Logarzo (excused), Pugh (hip), McGrady (quad), Eubanks (maternity)
OUT: Mautz, Jahansouz, Vasconcelos (knees)
QUESTIONABLE: Colaprico (knee), Brian (thigh), Davidson (thigh)#NWSL
— Jason Anderson (@chestrockwell14) August 9, 2019
When: Saturday, Aug. 10 at 7 p.m. ET
Where: Maureen Hendricks Field at Maryland SoccerPlex — Boyds, MD
Streaming: : Monumental Sports Network, Yahoo (domestic), NWSLsoccer.com (international)