The Houston Dash will make their debut on the international stage later today against the Portland Thorns at Providence Park. Kickoff is scheduled for 10 p.m. CT and fans can watch the game live on ESPN 2 in English and ESPN Deportes in Spanish.
Houston qualified for the Women’s International Champions Cup by winning the 2020 NWSL Challenge Cup. The Dash still have 12 players on the roster from the 2020 roster and look to represent the NWSL in the final on Saturday against the winner of the FC Barcelona vs. Olympique Lyonnais match scheduled for later today at 7:30 p.m. CT.
Houston arrived in Portland on Saturday after their 2-2 draw with the Washington Spirit on Friday at BBVA Stadium. Houston overcame a two-goal deficit for the first time in team history, beginning with a corner kick from Dash captain Rachel Daly. The England international served a ball into the heart of the box that was brought down by rookie Makamae Gomera-Stevens and a first-touch finish from Veronica Latsko brought Houston within one goal of the Spirit. Daly also had a hand in the second goal with a long cross into the final third that was brought down by Latsko. Houston native Michaela Abam controlled the ball and dribbled past a defender to find the back of the net and score her first goal for the Dash.
The Dash return to league play on Aug. 29 to host Louisville Racing at BBVA Stadium. This is the first meeting between both teams at BBVA Stadium and Houston look to even the series after the first meeting on June 20 that finished in favor of Louisville.
Houston Dash vs. Portland Thorns
Friday, Aug. 18 – 10:00 p.m. CT
ESPN 2 (English) and ESPN Deportes (Spanish)
Here are the three key points ahead of today’s game:
1. HOUSTON TRAVEL EARLY TO OREGON: The Houston Dash arrived in Oregon on Saturday, less than 24 hours after a 2-2 draw with the Washington Spirit on Friday night at BBVA Stadium. The Dash prioritized recovery in preparation for today’s match, their fourth match of the month. The Dash are scheduled to play six games in August, the busiest stretch of the year for the team.
2. DASH NAVIGATE LIMITED ROSTER: Dash head coach James Clarkson confirmed on Tuesday that the team will be without attacker Denisha Blackwood and defender Haley Hanson. Both players remained in Houston, but the team will receive a boost later in the week with the return of Olympic gold medalist Nichelle Prince and bronze medalist Kristie Mewis. The duo will likely be available for the second and final match of the WICC against FC Barcelona or Olympique Lyonnais. Canadian defender Allysha Chapman and Jane Campbell are scheduled to join the team prior to the Aug. 29 match against Racing Louisville.
3. THORNS ENTER TOP OF THE TABLE: The Thorns enter the break at the top of the NWSL table with 29 points and a 9-3-2 record. The Thorns have lost once this season at Providence Park and that came in May against OL Reign, who earned a 2-1 triumph. The Thorns will feature a new face in goal following the trade of goalkeeper Adrianna Franch to Kansas City NWSL for Abby Smith and $150,000 in allocation money. This is the third meeting of the year between the Dash and Thorns. Houston snapped Portland’s winning streak in the 2021 NWSL Challenge Cup with a 1-1 draw at BBVA Stadium on May 2. The Thorns scored in the opening minutes of the match on July 24 and earned three points at BBVA Stadium. The two teams will still meet for two additional regular season games later this year.