Ali Krieger's Last Regular Season Game
On Sunday, October 15th, 2023, NJ/NY Gotham FC will host the Kansas City Current in their final regular season game of the season at Red Bull Arena. This match will also be the last regular season game of legendary defender Ali Krieger's career.
Krieger has been a mainstay in the National Women's Soccer League (NWSL) since 2013. She has played for three different teams during her time in the league, including the Washington Spirit, Orlando Pride, and Gotham FC. Krieger has also made over 100 appearances for the United States Women's National Team, winning two World Cup titles.
At 39 years old, Krieger is one of the most experienced players in the world. She is also one of the most respected and beloved players in the game today. Krieger is known for her professionalism, her work ethic, and her dedication to her teammates.
On Sunday, Gotham FC will be looking to send Krieger off into the playoffs with a win. The team is currently tied for third place in the NWSL standings, and they are fighting for one of the four spots left in the playoffs. A win against Kansas City would secure a playoff spot for Gotham FC. A draw and Gotham is scoreboard watching. A loss and Gotham may need a lot of help getting over the line.
Keys to the Match
Gotham FC will need to be strong defensively. Kansas City is one of the most potent offenses in the NWSL, led by forwards Lo'eau LaBonta and Deninha. Krieger and her defense needs to be at their best to keep Kansas City's attackers off the scoresheet. A team fresh of a 6 goal game against Chicago.
Gotham FC will need to create chances on offense. Kansas City has a solid defense, but Gotham FC has the attacking talent to score goals. Gotham’s midfield will need to be creative in finding ways to get the ball to forward Esther Gonzalez. And Midge Purce and Lynn Williams will be called in to provide attacking width and support.
All about stopping Debinha. Defend as a unit. The more Gotham is on the front foot, pressuring KC in their half the more Debinha has to play defense. The more disciplined Gotham’s midfield can shut out that service to Debinha behind Gotham’s high line. Does Gotham have enough speed with Bruninha and Nighswonger to cover her on the edge? I expect Gotham to pull out a similar defensive tactic where Midge Purce sloats back to outside back as the pairing of Nighswonger and Bruninha get forward.
Gotham hasn’t scored in 2 matches
KC hasn’t kept a clean sheet in 6 matches and is last in the league in clean sheets
Gotham is #2 in goals conceded per match
Gotham has yet to beat KC in all competitions
Gotham is third in shots on target per match
Ruckus. I predict that arena to be loud and energetic. The last game of last season. The comeback draw against Portland was one of the most electric atmospheres I have been to despite a very small crowd. If that small crowd could propel that team to never give up and fight. Just imagine what a larger one could do. I intend to find out.
It will be emotional to see Krieger play her last regular season game. She is a true legend of the game, and she has been an inspiration to so many young players. I am sure that she will be given a proper regular season send-off by the Gotham FC fans on Sunday. I hope that she can lead her team to a victory and to a playoff spot.
A victory will almost assure a home playoff game. A feat this franchise has never achieved. Let’s get one Sunday!