The Utah Royals remain on the road this week as they prepare to face Seattle Reign in Washington for the first time. Here’s what you need to know ahead of the match:
1. The Royals are coming off a 4-0 loss in Portland on Friday, the worst defeat in the club’s short history. Friday’s match was the last of 2018 between the Royals and Thorns, the series ending at 0-2-1 for Utah. Portland is the only team to have scored more than two goals in a single match against Utah.
The loss left Utah in 6th place with 21 points and a record of 5-4-6. Utah is 2-3-3 on the road.
2. The NWSL Disciplinary Committee announced on Tuesday that Utah midfielder Diana Matheson has been suspended for one match after “endangering the safety of an opponent” on Friday and will miss Wednesday’s match in Seattle. The incident occurred in the 45th minute of the match against Portland, Matheson was shown a yellow card for her challenge on Midge Purce. Matheson has been a key attacking player for Utah this season and has 2 goals and 1 assist in 14 appearances. Katie Stengel leads the Royals with 3 goals.
3. Wednesday’s match will be the second of three between Seattle and Utah, the first played to a 0-0 draw just two weeks ago at Rio Tinto Stadium. Head coach Laura Harvey was unhappy with the result on June 27th, feeling they deserved to take all three points against her former team. Seattle has won both of their matches since they last faced Utah, beating the Thorns 1-0 and Dash 3-1 at home where they are 3-1-2 and have outscored opponents 11-7. Megan Rapinoe had 1 goal and 2 assists for Reign against Houston, bringing to her to 6 goals and 4 assists on the season. Seattle sits in 2nd place with 26 points and a record of 7-3-5.
Our coverage of Utah Royals at Seattle Reign begins on Wednesday, July 11th at 8:30 P.M. with Greg Wrubell and Carla Swensen-Haslam.
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