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NWSL release partial schedule for 2020 fall series

NWSL release partial schedule for the 2020 fall series

September 1, 2020 By Juan Aguerrevere
The National Women’s Soccer League released the televised schedule for the first three weeks of the 2020 fall series on Tuesday.

The NWSL announced on Tuesday, Aug. 25, that its breakout 2020 season will continue Sept. 5 with the start of the 2020 fall series. The announcement was made a month after the end of the successful NWSL Challenge Cup. However, the press release lacked a schedule and information about the competition. 

Exactly a week after the first announcement was made and five days before the fall series' first game, the league released the schedule for the first three weeks of the 2020 fall series. This leaves four weeks of the schedule on wait and general questions about the competition given the lack of information provided by this stage.

A question that fans might be asking themselves at this moment is, "will this be a competitive tournament?"

The Equalizer reported about the three-week schedule release and referred to the NWSL 2020 fall series as "slew of friendlies". They even stated that "the fall series is a slate of friendly matches" leading readers to believe that this will not be a competitive competition. The league's press releases have not stated that these upcoming games will indeed be friendlies.

A combination of the league's one-month wait to announce future plans after the NWSL Challenge Cup, the wait to announce schedules for the 2020 NWSL fall series, the reports by the Equalizer calling the fall series "a slate of friendly matches" and star players either leaving on loan spells to play in Europe or simply just opting out like Megan Rapinoe lead many to believe that this will not be a competitive tournament. 

Meg Linehan confirmed that this is not an attempt at a regular season because of the pods.

So, what can NWSL fans expect from the upcoming 2020 fall series at this stage?

The league divided the nine franchises into three pods:

West:

  • OL Reign
  • Portland Thorns FC
  • Utah Royals FC

Northeast:

  • Chicago Red Stars 
  • Sky Blue FC
  • Washington Spirit

South: 

  • North Carolina Courage 
  • Orlando Pride
  • Houston Dash

Given the success of health protocols during the Challenge Cup, the NWSL will continue to work closely with its medical task force. The protocols have been molded to fit home-market matches and regional travel. Moreover, the protocols have been divided into four subsets: PEE ProtocolStandards for Cleaning, Disinfection and SanitationCompetition ProtocolPositive Test Result Protocol

The NWSL will televise a Game of the Week every Saturday in September and three Saturdays in October through CBS Sports Network. CBS All Access will provide exclusive coverage of four games as well as the CBS broadcast coverage in September. Twitch will stream seven games globally, including in the U.S., and every game internationally. Here is the schedule for the first seven of 18 matches.

NWSL fall series: Broadcast links 


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