The Houston Dash returns to league play on Sunday after representing the NWSL at the 2021 Women’s International Champions Cup. Houston hosts Racing Louisville for the first of two home games this week and the Dash ends the week in Florida to face the Orlando Pride.
Six Dash Olympians return to the team after competing in the 2020 Olympic Games. Additionally, defender Haley Hanson returns to the team after missing the WICC due to injury.
This is the second meeting between both sides after Louisville earned a 1-0 victory over Houston in Kentucky. Houston looks to capitalize on the first of two games at home this week and enter the game with a 3-1-3 record at BBVA Stadium this season. Louisville have only won one of their seven games away from home and that was a 3-0 triumph over the Chicago Red Stars on June 26.
The Dash host Sofia Huerta and OL Reign for the third and final meeting of the regular season on Wednesday, Sept. 1 at 7 p.m. CT. The Dash close the week on the road against the Orlando Pride on Sunday, Sunday, Sept. 5.
Here are the three key points ahead of Sunday’s game:
- DASH OLYMPIANS RETURN TO BBVA STADIUM: Six Olympians return to Houston after competing with their national team at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo. Forward Nichelle Prince, defender Allysha Chapman and midfielder Sophie Schmidt return to Houston after winning the gold medal with Canada. Bronze medalists Jane Campbell and Kristie Mewis arrived in Oregon last Thursday prior to the WICC finale against FC Barcelona. Team captain Rachel Daly suited up for the club in the 2-2 draw with the Washington Spirit on Aug. 13. This will be the first game with the full roster since a 2-1 victory over the Chicago Red Stars on May 29. Prince and Mewis led the charge for Houston on May 29.
- HOUSTON BEGIN THREE-GAME WEEK AT HOME: BBVA Stadium will host two of the three games for Houston this week, which includes a midweek match against OL Reign. The Dash have a 3-1-3 record at home and look to maximize their chances in EaDo prior to a three-game stretch on the road in the final stretch of the season. Two victories at home would give Houston a share of the club record for the most home victories in a single season. The 2019 squad finished with a 5-3-4 record at home and sixth in the final standings. Following this two-game homestand, five of the next eight games will be away from home. Head coach James Clarkson has stressed the need for points at home and the Dash open league play looking to capitalize on their final two-game homestand till October.
- LOUISVILLE LOOKING FOR MOMENTUM: Racing Louisville enters the game with a penalty kick shootout victory over Bayern Munich in the inaugural edition of the Women’s Cup, but the squad enters Sunday’s game with a 1-4-2 record on the road and winless in their last three league games. Goalkeeper Katie Lund was the hero in the penalty kick shootout triumph over Bayern Munich, filling in for Michelle Betos, who leads the league with 58 saves. Louisville will look for more stability in the backline after conceding 22 goals this season, tied for the second most. Offensively, a familiar face returns to Houston in forward CeCe Kizer. The forward has scored one goal and adds two assists this season.