NWSL MATCH RECAP | Portland Thorns FC 0, Utah Royals FC 0

PORTLAND, Ore. – Portland Thorns FC recorded their second consecutive clean sheet at Providence Park and their third clean sheet in their last four games, playing to a scoreless draw with Utah Royals FC in front of 15,158 fans at Providence Park on Friday night.

Strong defense
Portland (4-1-4, 16pts) has conceded just one goal in its last four games, including back-to-back shutouts at Providence Park. Thorns FC have recorded four shutouts this season, which ranks tied for second in the NWSL. In the match, Portland surrendered just seven total shots and did not allow a single shot on target in the opening half.

Home-field advantage
With the draw, Thorns FC extended their unbeaten streak to eight consecutive regular-season home matches (5-0-3). Notably, Portland has conceded multiple goals just once during that span. Friday’s match also marked the first time Thorns FC have not scored in a regular-season home match since May 29, 2016.

Against Utah
Thorns FC recorded a third consecutive shutout against Royals FC in the fourth meeting all-time between the two clubs. Portland has recorded a clean sheet in all three matches against Royals FC at Providence Park. Thorns FC are unbeaten in each of their four matches (2-0-2) against Utah.

Key plays
Midge Purce worked her way down the right side of the field after receiving a ball over the top from Dagny Brynjarsdottir. Purce dribbled to the end line and cut back to the center of the box, firing a low shot toward the right corner that was pushed wide of the post in the eighth minute by Utah goalkeeper Nicole Barnhart.

Pushing for a goal, Meghan Klingenberg received a pass on the left wing near the edge of the box and floated a cross to the edge of the six-yard box in the 34th minute. Brynjarsdottir’s initial shot from close range was blocked and fell to Ana Crnogorcevic, but she sent a curling strike just wide of the right post.

Portland nearly took the lead in the 43rd minute on a quick counter-attack. With Purce leading the way, she dribbled down the left side of the field and into the box, cutting back to the center of the goal before firing a shot from near the penalty spot, but Royals FC defender Sam Johnson slid in at the last moment to block the attempt.

Thorns FC generated two chances quickly just minutes into the second half. Working down the left side of the field, Klingenberg delivered a cross into the center of the box. Purce’s initial shot was blocked and Crnogorcevic’s attempt on the rebound was blocked as well.

Searching for a goal, Brynjarsdottir connected with the ball on a set piece. Klingenberg served a ball off a corner kick into the center of the box and Brynjarsdottir sent her header just over the crossbar in the 52nd minute.

Continuing on the attack on the 64th minute, Purce picked up the ball on the left wing, dribbled to the top of the box and unleashed a powerful strike that skipped just wide of the left post.

In the 87th minute, Marissa Everett fired a low, hard shot toward the bottom left corner of the goal, but Barnhart dove to her right make the save.

Next match
Thorns FC return to the road for a match against the Houston Dash on Saturday, June 29, at BBVA Stadium. Beginning at 5:30 p.m. (Pacific), the match will be broadcast on Yahoo! Sports.  

Notes:

  • Thorns FC extended their home regular-season unbeaten streak to eight games (5-0-3).
  • Portland recorded its fourth shutout of the season, which is tied for second in the NWSL.
  • Thorns FC have registered a clean sheet in consecutive home matches.
  • Portland has earned a clean sheet in three of its last four matches, conceding just one goal during that span.
  • Thorns FC recorded their third consecutive shutout against Royals FC.
  • Portland is unbeaten in four meetings against Utah with a record of 2-0-2.
  • Klingenberg finished the match with five chances created, which was more than Utah created as a team in the match.
  • Kelli Hubly made her 2019 Providence Park debut in the match.
  • Madison Pogarch appeared in her first career match at Providence Park.

Portland Thorns FC (4-1-4, 16pts) vs. Utah Royals FC (5-2-2, 17pts)
June 21, 2019 – Providence Park (Portland, Ore.)

Goals by Half                             1          2          F
Utah Royals FC                         0          0          0
Portland Thorns FC                   0          0          0

Scoring Summary:
None

Misconduct Summary:
POR: Boureille (caution), 30
UTAH: LaBonta (caution), 56

Lineups:
POR: GK Eckerstrom, D Hubly (Pogarch, 77), D Ball, D Reynolds, D Seiler, D Klingenberg ©, M Boureille, M Brynjarsdottir, M Crnogorcevic (Everett, 84), F Purce, F Charley (Lussi, 65)

Substitutes Not Used: GK Bixby, M Byrne, M Ogle, F

TOTAL SHOTS: 13 (Purce, 6); SHOTS ON GOAL: 3 (Three players tied, 1); FOULS: 9 (Crnogorcevic, 3), OFFSIDES: 1; CORNER KICKS: 3; SAVES: 4

UTAH: GK Barnhart ©, D Miramontez, D Vincent, D Johnson, D Moros, Laddish (Stengel, 71), M Jonsdottir, M LaBonta, F Rodriguez, F Weber (Strom-Okomoto, 90+3), F Tymrak (Doniak, 83)

Substitutes Not Used: GK Smith, D Maemone, D Cox, M Newfield

TOTAL SHOTS: 7 (Weber, 3); SHOTS ON GOAL: 4 (Weber, 3); FOULS: 6 (Rodriguez, 2), OFFSIDES: 1; CORNER KICKS: 3; SAVES: 3

Referee: Rosendo Mendoza
Assistant Referees: Seth Martin, Melissa Gonzalez
4th Official: Jason Perlewitz
Attendance: 15,581
Weather: Partly cloudy, 66 degrees

All statistics contained in this box score are unofficial

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