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Match Preview: KC Current head to Gotham

The Kansas City Current square off against the NJ/NY Gotham FC on Sunday, April 14 in a return from the international break.



Credit: Thad Bell

WHEN: Sunday April 14 at 5:00 PM (Central Time)

WHERE: Red Bull Arena, Harrison, NJ



Current: 3-0-0 (9 points, 1st place)

NJ/NY Gotham: 1-0-1 (3 points, 6th place)

Last Match:

Current: 4-2 win home to Angel City

Angel City FC: 0-1 loss away to North Carolina

Kansas City’s scheduling gauntlet to open the 2024 season continues this weekend when they travel to New Jersey to clash with Gotham. To this point, the KC Current have faced the two teams with the best regular season records from 2023 and another playoff team that KC had never before defeated.

They now get to face the team that won it all last fall. That’s no easy feat, and yet so far so good for the Teal. They are alone in first place, the only team that has taken maximum points from each match. In fact, there is an argument to be made that the international break (the reason no teams played last weekend) came at the wrong time for the Current as they have looked rather unstoppable. We’ll see if they’re able to keep their momentum as they head to the Big Apple (ish).

Not only are NJ/NY Gotham FC (lots of abbreviations plus a fictional location) the defending champs, but they also went on a signing spree in the offseason and added what feels like half the USWNT to their team. Their roster now boasts Kelley O’Hara, Emily Sonnett, Rose Lavelle, Lynn Williams, Crystal Dunn, & Midge Purce among many others.

There are also distinct connections with KC as Williams, Kristen Edmonds, Abby Smith, and Cassie Miller (their starting keeper) all were with the Current at points recently. However, despite all this roster talent, there is a chance that KC is catching them at the right time. Not only is Purce out for the rest of the season, Lavelle and Williams haven’t been playing recently due to injury. Plus, Sonnett and Dunn both just started for the US in Tuesday’s She Believes Cup final, so they may get some extra rest this weekend.

Gotham has played two league matches plus the Challenge Cup final and have lost two of three. They have two opponents in common with Kansas City; they lost to the Wave and defeated the Thorns. They hosted the Challenge Cup, but their two league matches have thus far been on the road meaning Sunday’s game will officially be their home opener and championship banner raising/ring ceremony to commemorate the 2023 NWSL Championship.

The biggest distinction in any comparison to the Current so far is the number of goals scored (for and against) in their matches. In their three competitive matches, there have been a total of three goals scored–one for Gotham and two against. There have been six times more total goals scored in KC’s three matches and the Current have netted 11 of those. KC also has nine times more goal scorers thus far than Gotham. Talk about a contrast in styles! Our midwestern team leads the league in goals scored (four clear of second place) but only Portland has conceded more. The east coast team is at the bottom of the table in goals scored but is best in the league in goals conceded. Something will have to give this weekend.

Kansas City also had athletes participating in matches with their national teams during this international window as Lauren was with Brazil (in the She Believes Cup) and Stine Ballisager Pedersen was with Denmark in EURO qualifying. Interestingly, neither of these center backs have been primary contributors for KC this season; Stine Ballisager has come off the bench late and Lauren has yet to see the pitch. Desi Scott was also called up for Canada but didn’t make it into either match.

And while the break hopefully didn’t stall the Current’s momentum, it did provide a little more recovery time for the team’s injured athletes. The team had six out for their last match, but there is hope that Debinha, Mace, Glas, and Cooper could be nearing a return. For a team already finding goals from numerous sources, one wonders what the reintroduction of some of these players could mean. Certainly, a potential front line of Debinha, Bia, and Chawinga should strike fear into any opposing defense.

The Current couldn’t have dreamed of a better start to their season, from opening the first professional women’s soccer stadium to delighting fans with plenty of goals and victories. But the thing about sports is you just have to keep proving yourself, week after week. Gotham FC, the defending league champions, present KC with their next best test. I have a feeling they’ll pass it.

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