The Orlando Pride needed a win on Saturday to clinch its first-ever berth to the NWSL playoffs, but the Portland Thorns denied that from happening after playing to a 0-0 draw in front of 7,353 at Orlando City Stadium.
“Portland are a very good side, but I thought it would’ve been a grave injustice if we would have lost the game. We limited them to one real chance. We dominated the game, particularly for the first 30 minutes. I thought we played really well,” Orlando coach Tom Sermanni said. “But defensively they’re very good and they don’t give up a lot of chances, and they get everybody behind the ball. They are good at grinding out one-nil results away from home. I was delighted with how our players went about the job tactically today, considering we didn’t have any time to work with the team. I was delighted with the effort and thought if any team should’ve deserved to win the game I thought it was us.”
Despite the draw, the Pride (10-6-7, 37 points) can still clinch a playoff spot if the Seattle Reign lose and draw Sunday against FC Kansas City at 9 p.m. ET.
The Pride will play their final game of the regular season when they visit the North Carolina Courage on Saturday at 7:30 p.m.
Here’s how Orlando lined up:
Orlando Pride XI: Ashlyn Harris ©; Kristen Edmonds (Toni Pressley 78’), Monica, Ali Krieger, Steph Catley (Jasmyne Spencer 50’); Dani Weatherholt, Alanna Kennedy; Camila; Chioma Ubogagu, Alex Morgan, Marta
Substitutes Not Used: Aubrey Bledsoe; Nickolette Driesse; Danica Evans, Jamia Fields, Rachel Hill
(Photo by Brandon Connelly)
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