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Teen phenom Alyssa Thompson scores in Angel City FC debut

Alyssa Thompson beat Club América defenders and the goalkeeper to open the scoring for Angel City FC. (Photo courtesy of Angel City FC)

Alyssa Thompson started her Wednesday in typical fashion for a high school senior: She went to school, then she did her homework.

The 18-year-old then capped her day with her professional debut for Angel City FC, including a beauty of a goal to open the scoring in the fifth minute of the match.

“I’m still like, soaking it in,” Thompson said after the 3-0 win over Liga MX’s Club América. “It’s still shocking, but it’s just an amazing feeling.”

The No. 1 overall pick in this year’s NWSL draft, Thompson looks at home with the second-year club. The Southern California native had committed to play for Stanford but decided to forgo her college eligibility to become the top pick for Angel City.

The NWSL’s regular season kicks off March 25, so Thompson will balance the first few months of her professional career with her studies at Harvard-Westlake School, as she did Wednesday.

“I went to school, had English, then I went back home and I was getting more nervous and as time progressed, I was trying to not think about it (the game) that much,” she said. “When I got here, I was trying to focus, just trying to feel comfortable and once I stepped on the field, I felt better and I felt comfortable with my teammates and I felt prepared for the game and what was going to happen.”

She appeared in Angel City’s starting lineup for the preseason friendly and played 76 minutes in front of the home crowd at BMO Stadium. On her goal, she dribbled past three Club América defenders and goalkeeper Itzel González before sending the ball into the net.

“Her goal she took so coolly, like she had played in 100 games in this stadium,” Angel City coach Freya Coombe said.

Thompson also has played with the U.S. women’s youth and senior national teams. She earned her first caps with the senior team in 2022, and while she was off the roster for the early 2023 camps, she shined for the youth squad during a two-match series against France in February.