This was the first time in club history that Utah Royals FC have gone into a match having had already played their opponent. After they kicked off their inaugural season on March 24 against the Orlando Pride, they faced them again, this time on our soil.
As we all remember from the last time we faced them, the Royals were hard done by a poor refereeing decision that caused them to tie, instead of win, their first ever game. Flash forward 6 games, although this one’s refereeing was superior, the result was not. The Royals unfortunately were held to a 0-0 draw vs the Pride.
This game was one of the more foul filled ones we have seen from this team, with 8 conceded and 8 given just in the first half. This unfortunately made the game difficult to find a rhythm. Most the night we were unable to play for more than a few minutes at a time without stopping because of a foul. This may have ultimately played a role in how this game ended. There was also some great tackling though, like this beaut from Diana Matheson.
Think we've seen this before from @dmatheson8.#UTAvORL | #NWSL pic.twitter.com/faOYq6NQXY— NWSL (@NWSL) May 10, 2018
Another unfortunate event that happened in this game was Utah Royal Kelley O’hara subbed off in the 91st minute with what is speculated to be another hamstring injury. Although at this time we do not have an official report on what her injury is nor the severity of it, based on her body language coming off the pitch, that is what we are assuming for the time being.
There were some positives to this game however, one of them being Katie Stengel after she subbed on in the 76th minute for Amy Rodriguez. Stengel had at multiple shots on goal that were just missed or forced Pride goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris into making huge saves. She was definitely a bright spot in the attack when she subbed on. All in all, there were a lot of chances for both teams and the fact that this game ended 0-0 is a little surprising.