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NWSL Power Rankings: Week 13
The last batch of games before WWC players played before heading off to international duty. We have a new, but familiar, team at #1.
Portland Thorns (+1) - Sophia Smith is on pace for another MVP season. Her second hat trick of the season led the Portland Thorns to a win over the table leaders. Sam Coffey also had an assist brace and now leads the NWSL in assists. Is the team deep enough to hold onto their rediscovered shield lead?
Washington Spirit (-1) - Tough result on the road, but Mark Parsons and the Spirit are the real deal.
OL Reign - Bethany Balcer had a brace to lead OL Reign to sweep San Diego Wave. They have now have three wins over the top 6 teams in NWSL.
San Diego Wave - This team needs to be able to play with more possession and control. They are elite defensively, but they continue to play on the back foot and way too direct in big games.
North Carolina Courage (+1) - How in the world is Sean Nahas doing this? The coach of the year favorite is beating every single expectation the media had for his side. Can they pick up wins against top teams though?
NJ/NY Gotham FC (-1) - Chicago played on even footing with them for a good chunk of the game. Juan Carlos Amorós rolled out an interesting lineup and almost paid the price. They managed to get 3 points, but the team has not looked like a contender at all over the past month.
Houston Dash - Two consecutive games with a red card and somehow escaping with two scoreless draws? What amazing determination. This team is allowing the least amount of goals, but also have scored the least amount of goals. They’ve got to take advantage of having Sánchez, Ordóñez, and Salmon for the duration of the WWC window.
Racing Louisville - Their only wins have come against Chicago, Kansas City, and Gotham. This team has MVP candidate Sav Demelo, but they are one star forward away from consistently winning games. Could that player be on the roster? We shall see.
Angel City FC - Head coach Becki Tweed has this team playing much better, but they need to find more goals. Julie Ertz just played her best game in an ACFC kit, Lily Nabet has been terrific, and Sydney Leroux is getting stronger. Could Amandine Henry and Christen Press be the final pieces? Will it be too late to make a push?
Orlando Pride - Seb Hines has done an amazing job thus far, but Orlando does not have enough talent. They’re one or two offseasons away. Losing at home to Kansas City is a tough result.
Kansas City Current (+1) - Huge win in Orlando to keep their playoff chances alive. They now face a test to play at Providence Park against Portland who will be missing big names.
Chicago Red Stars (-1) - Terrific effort on the road against Gotham and nearly pulled off the upset. They have improved quite a bit the past few weeks. However, it’ll be most important to develop their young talent the rest of the season.
*Key: Teams with (+ or -) moved up or down from last week’s rankings
Tier 1 - The Favorites: Portland, Washington, OL Reign
Tier 2 - Dark Horses: San Diego, Gotham, North Carolina
Tier 3 - Playoff Chase: Houston, Louisville, Angel City
Tier 4 - Nope: Orlando, Kansas City, Chicago