In its first of three road matches, Seattle Reign FC (2-1-3) heads down to hot and humid Texas for a match against the Houston Dash (2-4-0). The game kicks off at 1 PM PT and is the featured Lifetime Game of the Week, which means viewers can catch the game on TV or the Lifetime app.
At kickoff, it is supposed to be near 93 degrees — and feel closer to 100. While Reign FC recently beat the Dash 5-1 in a dominating match at Memorial Stadium, the heat is going to be a big test for a Seattle side looking to get its first win on the road. Here’s Reign FC Coach Laura Harvey confirming the weather situation.
There is no getting around it: this game is going to be brutal for both teams and the fans who show up to BBVA Compass Stadium in Houston. If the Reign walk away with a point or three, and all players leave healthy, fans should consider it a success.
You know what they say ... when things get heated, it’s time to Let it Reign.
What to Watch
Houston is looking to bounce back after losing four of its last five games, including last week’s 2-1 loss to Sky Blue FC.
Houston’s defense, which looked solid opening week, has been vulnerable. The Dash have given up 12 goals, averaging two a game. Last week, they moved English international Rachel Daly to right back to help provide some defensive cover. It seemed to help a bit, but in doing so Houston sacrificed Daly’s lethal shot in the attack — and despite her best efforts, Kealia Ohai couldn’t lead the Dash attack on her own.
Houston may keep Daly along the backline to provide some defensive pressure to a Seattle team that put in five goals against them earlier this year. Last match, Seattle was able to pressure Houston’s midfield into mistakes, limiting balls to the always-threatening Ohai and Daly in the attack. That gave them time and space to move the ball quickly, and particularly opened up Megan Rapinoe on the flanks. A shaky performance by rookie goalkeeper Jane Campbell also helped.
A combination of Brian’s return to the midfield and the heat might make it harder for Seattle to maintain its high pressure for all 90 minutes. But if Seattle can focus on movement off the ball in the attack, and if the team can successfully limit Houston’s ability to move the ball through the midfield, the club should be able to leave Texas with three points — on national TV, too.
Houston Dash: DOUBTFUL: Bruna Benites (left knee mild MCL sprain)
Seattle Reign: OUT: Larissa Crummer (right foot fracture), Diana Matheson (left ACL tear), Merritt Mathias (suspended)
How to Watch
When: Saturday, May 27, 1 PM PT
Where: BBVA Compass Stadium, Houston
TV: Lifetime (pregame show starts at 12:30)
Streaming/Online: MyLifetime.com, Lifetime app (iOS/Android), NWSLSoccer.com (international viewers)
This is your Seattle Reign gamethread. Watch and discuss with us.