Sunday morning Gotham FC tied Louisville FC 0-0, securing their place in the NWSL Challenge Cup final.
In what has quickly become a common theme in the last two games, the newly-rebranded squad soldiered through a hot day at MSU Soccer Park with a resolute defense and a slightly disjointed offense. Though Gotham could likely be described as in control of most of the game, it was a sloppier performance than the home side would have liked, as Gotham never really offered a major threat on the Louisville net, spare a Domi Richardson strike that careened off the crossbar in the 83rd minute.
It’s a performance that provides a strong future building block, as Louisville was largely neutralized and struggled mightily to break through the Gotham defense, but one that will need to be improved if the surging club is to take down their opposition in the final, the Portland Thorns.
Facing what is possibly the strongest lineup in the league, Gotham will likely be up against the likes of USWNT stars in Lindsey Horan and the all-time leading Canadian national team scorer Christine Sinclair. The Thorns boast a roster that has both steel in the midfield and a razor sharp edge in attack. They’re defensively solid as well, as the Pacific Northwest side didn’t concede more than a single goal in any game in group play.
The final, as of right now (ongoing discussions about the status of COVID and attendance regulation at the Thorns’ home in Providence Park mean that the venue is not totally confirmed as the location of the game) will be played in Portland at 1pm EST on Saturday, May 8th. It will be the club’s first shot at silverware since their incorporation into NWSL in 2013.