The Orlando Pride are for real. I’m tempted to slot them at No. 2 just because they seem to thrive in that underdog position. However, at this moment, they simply are the team to beat.
After the Pride, the No. 2-through-6 zone is straight chaos. It feels like on any given day, anyone can beat anyone. The differences between the sides are minuscule and they’ve all seemingly beaten each other already. But that’s what makes the NWSL great.
Without further ado:
10. Kansas City (-1)
Even though that probably wasn’t a goal, Orlando was still the better team and deserved to win that game. Kansas City is now the only team in the league still searching for a win.
9. Chicago Red Stars (+1)
They may have beaten Kansas City, but I’m still not convinced this group is cohesive enough to consistently win games. The talent is there, but it’s just not consistent.
8. Racing Louisville (-1)
A young Louisville side got slapped down to earth in their game against North Carolina, who absolutely destroyed them in every facet of the game. Things don’t get any easier with Portland this weekend.
7. Houston Dash (-1)
The Dash beat Chicago but not before losing to a 10-player Washington Spirit side. There’s glimpses of good, but they’re conceding too many goals.
6. OL Reign (-4)
I was riding high on the Reign after their Portland road win, but to follow that up with a loss at home to the Spirit, with Rose Lavelle in the starting line up, hurts. When they’re at their best, they’re one of the best, but It’s hard to know which Reign team is going to show up on a given day.
5. Gotham FC (-2)
I know. Dropping Gotham FC this far after a single loss is harsh. But the middle of the pack is just chaos at the moment. Losing to a struggling Thorns side at home makes this weekend’s game against the Reign crucial for recovering their early season momentum.
4. Washington Spirit (+4)
The Spirit plays the Pride this weekend, and I’ve got the game circled on my calendar. They’re currently 1-2 on the points table and it’s a quick rematch from an early season draw.
3. Portland Thorns (-2)
The back to back losses to the Reign (at home) and Pride weren’t pretty. But the Thorns rebounded with a win over Gotham FC on the road. These next couple weeks will really show if the side peaked in the preseason.
2. North Carolina Courage (+3)
Sam Mewis is back and the Courage absolutely throttled a Louisville FC team riding high from their first win of the season. I think they’ve turned the corner from beginning of the season mediocrity (by their standards).
1. Orlando Pride (+4)
Three games in a week, three wins. Orlando rightfully deserves the crown this week, and if they play the way they have been, they should keep the top spot moving forward.