Last week was no fun, so the team looks towards this midweek match as a chance to wipe the slate clean and get back to what they know works. Here’s a look at the Royals trip to Seattle.
Back to basics
As opposed to the two matches prior to Portland, the Thorns gave us a good look at what doesn’t work. URFC got away from the composed control and accurate passing that has served them well in their better matches, and the defense was left exposed as a result. Practice this week will likely have been a focus on remembering what they are best at and being in the right frame of mind to put the past behind them and executing their plan.
This has been an extended trip with the team staying in Portland and Seattle rather than coming back to Utah between games. Combined with two matches on an artificial surface, and it will be important for the players to take care of themselves. This may lead to Laura Harvey rotating players in the starting lineup, whether due to the need to rest others who are getting heavy minutes or just as a tactical chance to face a different club. The team will also have to adjust to the absence of Diana Matheson, who was suspended by the league for her tackle on Midge Purce on Saturday.
Facing the challenge
Seattle will be just as dangerous as they were when they visited Rio Tinto Stadium two weeks ago, and will have the advantage of playing at home. They’ll be more comfortable without the heat and elevation, so the Royals will have to be sharp to avoid another loss. While another draw against this team wouldn’t be a terrible result, wins are going to be hard to come by as the season nears its end, so it’s important to play a smart match and come away with three points in this one.
When: Wednesday, July 11th, 8:30 PM MT
Where: Memorial Stadium, Seattle, WA
Weather: Sunny, 73 degrees
Broadcast: KMYU, KSL (app), go90, ESPN 700 (radio)
Referee: Katja Koroleva