Match Preview: Kansas City Current opens the 2022 Regular Season on the road, April 30 against the Portland Thorns Kansas City Current

Match Preview: Kansas City Current opens the 2022 Regular Season on the road, April 30 against the Portland Thorns

After finishing atop the Central division in the Challenge Cup group phase, the Kansas City Current opens the regular season Saturday, April 30 at 5 p.m. CT against the Portland Thorns at Providence Park in Portland, Oregon. The match will broadcast live exclusively on Twitch.

NEW SEASON, NEW EXPECTATIONS

Kansas City played its first match in the NWSL at Portland April 9, 2021. On that date, the team then known as Kansas City NWSL, scored its first goal in the 60th minute of the match, but eventually ended up falling 2-1. The team finished last in the Western Division of the Challenge Cup and the regular season.

2022 brings optimism and expectations for Kansas City. The team rebranded as the Current, added star players and a new coaching staff led by head coach Matt Potter, who has guided his team to five results in the first six matches (four wins, one draw) of the Challenge Cup.

IT’S ELECTRIC

With the regular season kicking off, the Current will be debuting the new ‘Electric’ kit in Saturday’s match. The team’s secondary jersey features bursts of teal accents rising along the sides of the jersey, representing world-class players who are carving a new path driven by energy and optimism. Accents of Heartland Red, including the iconic NIKE Swoosh and piping along the side and neck, symbolize the Current’s connection to the community, passion for the sport, and commitment to one another. Fans are able to purchase the jersey online or at Current home matches, beginning with the Challenge Cup Semifinal on May 4.

LAST MEETING

Kansas City recorded its fifth straight unbeaten game at home when these teams battled to a 0-0 draw October 10, 2021. Both sides had their chances to score. Kansas City forward Kristen Hamilton found the back of the net in the first half, but a foul call just before negated the score. Portland’s best chance came when the Thorns were awarded a penalty kick in the second half. Canadian forward Christine Sinclair missed the shot wide, giving AD Franch her second clean sheet with KC.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Kansas City Current: Forward Elyse Bennett – Kansas City’s first pick (seventh overall) in the 2022 NWSL Draft, has been a strong presence for the Current throughout the preseason and Challenge Cup. The rookie forward had more assists than any other player in the Challenge Cup, setting up four crucial Current scores over six games.

Portland Thorns: Forward Christine Sinclair – One of three players who has played for the same team in every NWSL season, Sinclair continues to be one of the leaders for the Thorns. Her 54 career goals ranks third in NWSL history, and she has 10 more playoff starts than any other player.

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