NWSL Matchday Preview | Portland Thorns FC vs. Seattle Reign FC | July 30, 2016


Date: Saturday, July 30, 2016
Kickoff: 7:30 p.m. (Pacific)
Location: Providence Park (Portland, Ore.)
Forecast: Sunny, 84 degrees
Referee: Malik Bawadi
Assistant Referees: Cory Richardson, Adrienne McDonald
Fourth Official: JJ Blodgett
Tickets: Thorns vs. Reign


Portland Thorns FC return to action, following an idle week, and will play four of their final six regular-season games at Providence Park, starting with a match against Seattle Reign FC on July 30. In addition, it’s the final match before the NWSL takes a league-wide break for the Rio 2016 Olympics.

Saturday’s match is the third of four meetings between Portland and Seattle this season, and the first of back-to-back matches. The two teams will meet after the Olympic break in Seattle on Aug. 27.

The match features two of the top defensive teams in the league as Thorns FC have surrendered the second-fewest goals (12) in the league, while Seattle has conceded the third-fewest goals (13) in the NWSL this season.


Portland played its last match on the road against the Houston Dash on July 16 at BBVA Compass Stadium, falling 3-0 in the match. Thorns FC created several good scoring opportunities in the opening 20 minutes of the match. Forward Hayley Raso sent a shot just wide of the left post in the fourth minute and nearly chased down a back pass by a Houston defender in the 14th minute, pushing her shot just wide. After conceding the opening goal in the 7th minute to Houston forward Rachel Daly, midfielder Celeste Boureille nearly equalized, sending a shot from near the penalty spot just over the bar in the 25th minute of the match.


Seattle (5-4-5, 20pts) heads into Saturday’s match following a 5-2 win against the Orlando Pride at Memorial Stadium on July 23. Reign FC have earned at least one point in seven of their last eight games. Seattle has conceded the third- fewest goals (13) and scored the third-most goals (18) in the NWSL this season. Defensively, Reign FC this season had a stretch of five consecutive shutouts from May 29 - July 2. Midfielder Kim Little has tallied a team-high four goals, while forwards Manon Melis and Naho Kawasumi have each scored three goals. Seattle is without goalkeeper Hope Solo and midfielder Megan Rapinoe. Both are with the U.S. Women’s National Team in Brazil for the Olympics. Reign FC have been strong at home this season, posting a record of 4-2-2 at Memorial Stadium, but have earned just one win on the road this season with a 1-2-3 record. Their only road win was against the Boston Breakers on April 24.


Saturday’s match marks the final regular-season meeting at Providence Park between Reign FC and Thorns FC, and the 12th meeting all-time between the two clubs. The two previous meetings this season finished in a draw. Nadia Nadim tallied her first goal of the season in a 1-1 draw on May 14 at Memorial Stadium in Seattle, while the two teams played to a scoreless draw at Providence Park on May 29. Portland holds a slight edge in the all-time series with a record of 5-4-2, including a mark of 3-2-1 at home.


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