Updated: Oct 24
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Gotham FC advances to the semi finals after besting the NC Courage 2-0 in the 1st round of the playoffs.
Fans at Wake med Park, Cary, NC, witnessed an exhilarating match between Gotham FC and the NC Courage that ended in a 2-0 victory for the visitors. The match was filled with drama and excitement, with both teams showcasing their attacking prowess and defensive resilience.
Gotham FC's veteran defender Ali Krieger played a pivotal role in the team's performance, demonstrating her leadership and experience throughout the match. 16 recoveries, 3 interceptions, 4 clearances. Krieger remained composed and organized the backline effectively. Her presence and guidance were crucial in Gotham FC's comfortable victory.
A game of chess
Gotham FC and the Courage like to press and possess. These are the top two possession teams in the league. Early on Gotham conceded possession to the Courage but only in advantageous areas. Gotham hunted for turnovers. Not allowing for the Courage to play forward.
Heading into the half 0-0 seemed like a forgone conclusion. But it was not to be. Delaney Sheehan scored her first professional goal by passing the ball to the far post and it gets by everyone. What a time to get your first!
Gotham FC continued their dominance in the second half, continuing to bait the Courage into turnovers.
Every one of Gotham's forwards put in a defensive shift. Tracking back and winning duels. One such player, Lynn Williams was everywhere on the pitch. 11 recoveries of her own. She was relentless.
Her effort paid off when she out hustled and dispossessed the Courage defender and found Yazmeen Ryan for the win securing 2nd goal. Gotham's supporter group cloud 9 who was fun loud all night erupted in cheer. Gotham gets their first NWSL playoff win.
Ali Krieger's Standout Performance
Ali Krieger's performance stood out throughout the match. She demonstrated her leadership skills, organizing the defense and motivating her teammates. Her experience and composure were vital in Gotham FC's ability to control a very dangerous NC attack.
Krieger's defensive contributions were crucial, making timely interceptions and tackles to thwart the NC Courage's attacks. She also played a key role in initiating Gotham FC's build-up play from the back, showcasing her passing range and vision.
"This is not Ali Krieger's last game!" - coach Amoros, post game.
The 39 year old is playing some of the best soccer of her career. And she's not ready to hang her boots up just yet. Her determination, leadership, and unwavering commitment to the team were evident throughout the match. Krieger's performance exemplified her status as a true legend of the game.
The ride continues as Gotham FC travels west as the only east cost team left in the tournament. Gotham has 2 weeks to prepare, get healthy and get ready. Let's hope there are two more games left in captain Krieger's career. One where she's lifting hardware after it.