I won’t lie — I’m feeling pretty good about my preseason NWSL rankings. I may have jumped the gun ranking OL so high before their French arrivals, so the downward correction there was more the market re-adjusting to current conditions. I also need to stop having any Gotham skepticism. I apologize. I’m on the bandwagon. They’re good.
Here’s where the rest of the league stands after opening weekend:
10. Racing Louisville —
A tie with Kansas City keeps the bottom two teams in place.
9. Kansas City —
8. Chicago Red Stars —
Things can only get better for Chicago after getting thrashed by Portland, but they stay put (for now), as the Thorns are simply head and shoulders above the rest of the league.
7. Orlando Pride ↓ 1
The Pride need points at home. A late tie will feel good, but the feeling will be short lived.
6. Washington Spirit ↑ 1
The Spirit will rue giving up a late goal to draw with the Pride, but they’ve now gotten points in Orlando twice.
5. OL Reign ↓ 2
A tie to start the year isn’t bad, but the Reign need to find more ways to put the ball in the back of the net. Rose Lavelle should help the team spend less time in their own end.
4. North Carolina ↑ 1
The return of Abby Erceg seems to have secured the backline, and the return of Sam Mewis will only help. Assuming Lynn William’s injury isn’t long-term, you’ve got to believe the goals are coming.
3. Houston Dash ↓ 1
They probably deserved more points from their game against Gotham, but most of the finishing woes felt self-inflicted.
2. Gotham FC ↑ 3
Gotta give credit where credit is due. Gotham is finding ways to win.
1. Portland Thorns —
The Thorns just made a team of USWNT all-stars look like a JV squad. I knew this team was good. I didn’t know they’d score more goals (5) than the rest of the league combined (3). Sheesh.