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Reign vs FC Kansas City Stream and Game Thread

Last season's two best teams face off again in a new era, where both are struggling to get into the playoff picture.

This afternoon in Kansas City last year's two NWSL Finalists meet for the last time this regular season, both still trying to find the form that carried them so far in 2015.

Whether the Reign are in good form or not depends on whether you're a glass-half-full or glass-half-empty type of person. Or more accurately, whether you want your glass half full of offense or defense.

Defensively, the team is stout. They're riding a streak of three consecutive shutouts and are about to face a team that's only scored 6 goals in 9 games. But offensively, the team can't find its way. In that three game streak they've only scored one goal of their own, and haven't had a multi-goal game since an April 3-0 win over abject Boston.

That disparity makes sense given the injuries that have plagued the team in the early season. Losing Megan Rapinoe and Manon Melis (and for a time Jess Fishlock) put too much of the scoring burden on Kim Little, and opposing offenses have in large part succeeded in smothering her and prevent Reign chances. But Fishlock is back. Melis is off of the injury list for the first time since she broke her leg. Rapinoe is healthy enough to make the preliminary Olympic roster. And Naho is on her way back.

Kansas City has less to look forward to. They're only three points behind Seattle, but their losses can't be repaired, after Lauren Holiday retired and they lost both Amy Rodriguez and Sydney Leroux for the year to pregnancies. Then Jen Buczkowski retired in the middle of the season. And shortly they lose Becky Sauerbrunn and (possibly) Heather O'Reilly to the Olympics.

The defending champions are a wounded animal, and the Reign can take some small measure of revenge for the final by sinking them deeper in the standings with a loss at their park. But first Seattle's valkyries have to remember how to score.

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