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 North Carolina Courage

Preview of Courage at Portland Thorns

June 7, 2024 - National Women's Soccer League (NWSL)
North Carolina Courage News Release

PORTLAND, Ore. - The North Carolina Courage continues a marathon road stretch to visit the Portland Thorns this Saturday, June 8, for a 10 p.m. ET (7 PT) kickoff at Providence Park. The Courage wraps up the stretch of six of seven on the road on ION with Maura Sheridan and Gary Bailey on the call.

North Carolina is coming off a 3-0 loss to the Houston Dash two weeks ago at Shell Energy Stadium, entering the weekend in seventh in the NWSL table with a 5-0-6 record and remaining on 15 points through 11 matches.

The Courage and Dash split the regular season series for 2024 with both home sides earning wins. That's a microcosm of the Courage's season as they are a perfect 5-0-0 at home while going 0-0-6 on the road in 2024. The Courage beat Portland, 2-0, at WakeMed Soccer Park in April and will look to earn road points for the first time this season in this weekend's return trip.

North Carolina continues to lead the NWSL in possession (59.6%) and passing accuracy (81.7%) but has scored just one goal in the last four games. The North Carolina build has been solid but accuracy with the final touch has been the difference with just 29% of total shots on target, matching Bay FC for the lowest percentage in the NWSL.

The Courage and Thorns are quite familiar with one another. They rank first and second in total league trophies and have played 20 times, including the 2017 NWSL Championship where the Thorns edged the Courage, 1-0. The Courage holds a 10W-6L-4D series edge against Portland and an 8-4-4 record in regular season meetings after the win earlier this year.

Portland won six in a row after the loss at WakeMed Soccer Park, with that streak snapped the last time out in a 2-1 loss at league-leading Orlando. The run has vaulted Portland from the bottom of the table up to fourth place with 19 points on a 6-1-4 record. The Thorns rank in the top three in the league in goals, assists, shots, and shots on target.

After this weekend, the Courage will get some extended play at home where they have been in perfect form. North Carolina looks to get over the road woes and find points in one of the toughest environments in the NWSL. A road result would be huge to build off with three of the next four at home ahead of the Olympic break.

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