Coffey tallied a league-best eight assists in 22 matches, Smith was 2023 Golden Boot winner with 11 goals.
PORTLAND, Ore. – The National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) today announced that Portland Thorns FC midfielder Sam Coffey and forward Sophia Smith were named to the NWSL Best XI First Team, presented by Mastercard. The Best XI First Team and Best XI Second Team are based on a weighted voting scale comprised of players (50%), owners/GMs/coaches (20%), media (20%) and fans (10%).
Coffey, a finalist for NWSL MVP, was one of two Thorns FC players to start and play in all 22 regular season matches. The Portland midfielder tallied a league-best eight assists in her second season in the NWSL. A 2022 NWSL Best XI First Team pick, Coffey is the second Portland player to lead the league in assists (Tobin Heath, 2016) and her eight assists rank as the second-most in a single season in club history. She set up goals for seven different players in 2023 – the most different teammates any player has assisted in a single season in league history. Individually, Coffey led the NWSL in chances created from set play (18) and ranked fifth overall in chances created (39).
The 2023 Golden Boot winner, Smith is also a finalist for NWSL MVP, after earning MVP honors and first team recognition in 2022. This season, Smith led the league with 11 goals in 16 matches, while also adding five assists. Smith was one of two players in the NWSL this season ranked among the top five in both goals and assists. The Thorns FC forward recorded two hat tricks during the regular season and became just the third player in league history to net two hat tricks in one season. Smith also scored in five consecutive matches (June 3-Aug. 20) as she became the third player in league history to register multiple scoring streaks of four or more matches.
2023 NWSL Best XI First Team (listed by position, alphabetically by last name): Goalkeeper: Jane Campbell, Houston Dash – Defenders: Naomi Girma, San Diego Wave FC; Sarah Gorden, Angel City FC; Ali Krieger, NJ/NY Gotham FC; Sam Staab, Washington Spirit – Midfielders/Forwards: Sam Coffey, Portland Thorns FC; Debinha, Kansas City Current; Kerolin, North Carolina Courage; Jaedyn Shaw, San Diego Wave FC; Sophia Smith, Portland Thorns FC; Lynn Williams, NJ/NY Gotham FC
2023 NWSL Best XI Second Team (listed by position, alphabetically by last name): Goalkeeper: Kailen Sheridan, San Diego Wave FC – Defenders: Emily Fox, North Carolina Courage; Kaleigh Kurtz, North Carolina Courage; Jenna Nighswonger, NJ/NY Gotham FC; M.A. Vignola, Angel City FC – Midfielders/Forwards: Savannah DeMelo, Racing Louisville FC; Ashley Hatch, Washington Spirit; Savannah McCaskill, Angel City FC; Alex Morgan, San Diego Wave FC; Denise O’Sullivan, North Carolina Courage; Trinity Rodman, Washington Spirit