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Why all eyes will be on North Carolina versus Orlando this weekend


The Challenge Cup final matchup has yet to be decided, and it’s coming down to the wire.

The Portland Thorns have had the West locked up for some time now, securing their spot in the championship game, which will air on CBS on May 8.

The East, however, hasn’t been so simple. Gotham FC currently sits atop the standings, but this weekend’s slate of games could shake that up.

North Carolina’s showdown against the Orlando Pride on Saturday (7:30 p.m. ET, CBS Sports Network) could ultimately decide who will face the Thorns for the Challenge Cup trophy.

But … Gotham can still control its own destiny with a win against Louisville on Sunday (12:30 p.m. ET, Paramount+).

Here are the potential East Division outcomes to break your brain:
  • If Gotham wins on Sunday, it will advance to the final.
  • If Gotham draws or loses and North Carolina wins, the Courage will advance.
  • If Gotham ties and North Carolina loses, Gotham will go.
  • If North Carolina ties and Gotham doesn’t win, it will come down to goal differential, on which Gotham can win or draw.
  • Orlando can also advance if Gotham loses and the Pride gain 3 points in goal differential.

To make matters more complicated, there is also a chaos scenario in play:

Tune in this weekend to watch the madness unfold.