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NWSL Cup QF's preview and broadcast listings

NWSL Challenge Cup: Quarter-finals preview, broadcast listings - July 17 - 18

July 14, 2020 By Michelle Bonsu
Live Soccer TV provides an overview of the quarter-finals of the NWSL Challenge Cup starting on July 17th.

Matchdays one through eight of the 2020 NWSL Challenge Cup have finally come to an end, and now it's on to the quarter-finals. With Orlando Pride having to leave the tournament due to an outbreak of COVID-19 in their ranks, every single one of the eight teams featuring automatically gained a ticket to the knockout rounds, albeit via a seeding format.

Current NWSL champions North Carolina Courage cruised through the early stages, and not surprisingly, the Courage are into the quarter-finals as the no. 1 seed. They will face Portland Thorns, who are the only team yet to win a match so far in the first quarter-finals match on Friday, July 17th. Meanwhile, Washington Spirit secured a win on the final matchday to snatch the no. 2 seed and thus will face Sky Blue in their quater-finals tie on Saturday, July 18th.

Here's all you need to know ahead of the first knockout rounds of the 2020 NWSL Cup.

Preview: North Carolina Courage vs Portland Thorns

This will feel like a curious case of déjà vu for women's soccer fans who have been avidly following this tournament. Why? Because it's going to be an exact replay of the opening match of this tournament. North Carolina Courage's supporters will hope that the result will be exactly the same as well, while obviously fans of Portland Thorns will be yearning to see a different score-line this time around. After a scoreless first half, the match began to open up, with the Courage netting first in the 75th minute through Debinha, followed by Simone Charley equalizing for the Thorns just five minutes later. However, USWNT international Lynn Williams grabbed a stoppage time goal to secure all three points for the NWSL reigning champs and set them up nicely for a strong start to this competition.

The Courage ultimately finished the group stage portion with a perfect winning record, scoring seven times and conceding just once along the way. Naturally, they are viewed as the heavy favorites to win this competition as they came into this contest with an impeccable seasonal record - as the winner of both the Shield and the NWSL Championship.

As for Portland, they certainly would have hoped to face a different opponent at this juncture, but unfortunately, things just aren't clicking for them. Although shot stopper Bella Bixby has put in a good shift in between the posts - she's only allowed three goals past her and has recorded 11 saves - their attack has been rather poor, with veteran Christine Sinclair unable to have any impact. They come into this match having scored just two goals, and were unable to make any inroads in a scoreless draw with OL Reign.

Where to watch North Carolina Courage vs Portland Thorns live on July 17, 2020

North Carolina Courage vs Portland Thorns kick-off at 09:30 PST/12:30 EST/16:30 GMT

USA: CBS All Access

Canada: CBS All Access

Live elsewhere? Here's where to watch North Carolina Courage vs Portland Thorns live in your current location:

 

Match details, result and original broadcast info

North Carolina Courage 0 - 1 Portland Thorns

July 17, 2020 12:30pmZions Bank Stadium, Herriman, Utah

This match has ended. Below are the original Live broadcast details for this match.

Live TV coverage and streaming in United States

CBS All Access


Preview: Houston Dash vs Utah Royals

Both hosts Utah Royals and their upcoming opponents Houston Dash suffered losses in their final games before the knockout rounds, to Chicago Red Stars and Washington Spirit respectively. As such, they will naturally be eager to get back to winning ways on Friday. This also will be another case of déjà vu, just like the Courage vs. Thorns clash. The two sides met up earlier in this tournament and played out to a 3-3 stalemate, which to date is the highest scoring match so far at this event. In it, the Royals had to come from 3-1 down to secure a point against Houston with two late goals scored by Veronica Boquete and Tziara King. Naturally, fans will be eager to a repeat of that same kind of end-to-end action in this upcoming fixture.

Although Houston have conceded six goals - which is more than any of the other sides - goalkeeper Jane Campbell has made 12 saves, which is the second most of any shot-stopper at this tournament. She'll clearly need her defense to step up and provide more coverage; offensively, the team has done solidly enough, with English international Rachel Daley being involved in three of the team's five goals (two goals, one assist).

Utah Royals, meanwhile, have made up for the absence of star attacker Christen Press with players like the aforementioned Boquete contributing to the effort - she's been involved in three of their four goals (one goal, two assists) as well as Amy Rodriguez helping to spearhead the attack. Given how the first meeting played out, this will be an interesting one for fans of both teams and everyone else who has been following this competition.

Where to watch Houston Dash vs Utah Royals live on July 17, 2020

Houston Dash vs Utah Royals kick-off at 19:00 PST/22:00 EST/02:00 GMT

USA: CBS All Access

Canada: CBS All Access

Live elsewhere? Here's where to watch Houston Dash vs Utah Royals live in your current location:

 

Match details, result and original broadcast info

Houston Dash P0 - 0 Utah Royals

July 17, 2020 10:00pmZions Bank Stadium, Herriman, Utah

This match has ended. Below are the original Live broadcast details for this match.

Live TV coverage and streaming in United States

CBS All Access


Preview: Washington Spirit vs Sky Blue

Sky Blue finished in the penultimate position after the first eight matchdays and conceded just three goals. However, were it not for the top notch performances of Kailen Sheridan, who recorded a tournament-high 14 saves as well as two clean sheets, things would have been a lot worse. The New Jersey based outfit were only pipped to sixth spot by Chicago Red Stars due to having accumulated more yellow cards (the Red Stars only earned one versus their four) and as a result will face a much stronger seed, second-ranked Washington Spirit in the quarter-finals.

The absence of defensive duo Madison Tiernan and Caprice Dydasco, as well as skipper Carli Lloyd due to injuries really has hampered the side from the very beginning, as they have struggled both in defense and in attack. Meanwhile, Washington Spirit have hard largely a solid tournament, with the only blip being a 2-0 loss to North Carolina Courage. Head coach Richie Burke opted to leave star player Rose Lavelle totally out of the squad after she suffered an ankle injury for the team's final match against Houston Dash, and he'll be hoping to have her back fully fit for their upcoming crunch clash against Sky Blue.

Where to watch Washington Spirit vs Sky Blue live on July 18, 2020

Washington Spirit vs Sky Blue kick-off at 09:30 PST/12:30 EST/16:30 GMT

USA: CBS All Access

Canada: CBS All Access

Live elsewhere? Here's where to watch live Washington Spirit vs Sky Blue in your current location:

 

Match details, result and original broadcast info

Washington Spirit 0 - 0P Sky Blue

July 18, 2020 12:30pmZions Bank Stadium, Herriman, Utah

This match has ended. Below are the original Live broadcast details for this match.

Live TV coverage and streaming in United States

CBS All Access


Preview: OL Reign vs Chicago Red Stars

OL Reign are another side who had a horrible start to this tournament. As late as matchday five, they had yet to win a game and had not even scored a single goal. However, they finally turned things around and clawed their way up the table into third spot, with Bethany Balcer being the team's first - and so far only - goal-scorer in a narrow 1-0 win over Washington Spirit. And although they were unable to get past Portland Thorns, their scoreless result was enough to pick up another point, bring them to a total of five points, and pip a whole slew of sides, including upcoming opponents Chicago Red Stars to third heading into the quarter-finals.

As for Chicago Red Stars, they're another team who have not had a strong tournament, and only picked up their first win in their final game prior to the knockout rounds. However, with Orlando Pride not featuring, the Red Stars, like several other sides, have benefited from this because all eight teams automatically get to feature in the quarter-finals, regardless of where they ended up in the rankings. It will be very interesting to see, though, how they fare against their upcoming opponents. Neither team has inspired much in attack - the Red Stars have only scored twice, and as noted before, OL Reign have just one goal to their name - so fans of these two sides will hope their respective teams' attacks will finally get up and firing as the crunch matches start in just a few days' time. 

Where to watch OL Reign vs Chicago Red Stars live on July 18, 2020

OL Reign vs Chicago Red Stars kick-off at 19:00 PST/22:00 EST/02:00 GMT

USA: CBS All Access

Canada: CBS All Access

Live elsewhere? Here's where to watch OL Reign vs Chicago Red Stars live in your current location:

 

Match details, result and original broadcast info

OL Reign 0 - 0P Chicago Red Stars

July 18, 2020 10:00pmZions Bank Stadium, Herriman, Utah

This match has ended. Below are the original Live broadcast details for this match.

Live TV coverage and streaming in United States

CBS All Access

 


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