Courtesy of Kansas City Current
The Kansas City Current (6-11-1, 19pts) fell short at home against Angel City FC (6-6-6, 24 pts), despite out-shooting Los Angeles 18-15. A goal from defender Jasmyne Spencer in the 66th minute made the difference for the visitors.
“We allowed Angel City to come here and dictate the game,” said interim head coach Caroline Sjöblom. “That was not part of the game plan, of course. It turned into chaos, a transitional game instead of controlling possession and controlling the tempo today. Of course we can be disappointed, but we are going to reload for Wednesday. We are going to give everything to win against North Carolina and to be in the final.”
The action kicked off early, with end-to-end play dominating the first half. In the 11th minute, Angel City was awarded a free kick on the edge of the attacking third. Midfielder Clarisse Le Bihan lofted a ball into the box, finding defender Mary Alice Vignola at the far post. Goalkeeper AD Franch instinctually dove to her right for an incredible save.
Forward Kristen Hamilton had her best chance of the night in the 25th minute, when a long ball from rookie Michelle Cooper found the veteran charging past the Angel City back line. Hamilton cut around two defenders to make the shot, but goalkeeper Angelina Anderson was able to get a hand on it to deny a goal.
Kansas City had another great chance in the 61st minute, when midfielder Debinha worked her magic down the left-hand side, dribbling past defender Sarah Gorden and hitting a cross toward Hailie Mace, who was open in front of goal. The pass was headed away by an Angel City defender before Mace could jump on it.
In the 66th minute, Angel City broke the deadlock. Defender Jasmyne Spencer dribbled into the box, then jumped on a deflected clearance to hit a shot past Franch into the far corner of the goal.
The match saw the debut of recently signed defender Stine Ballisager Pedersen, who entered the game at halftime for her first minutes in KC Current Heartland Red. In the 80th minute, midfielder Claire Lavogez entered the match for her first appearance in 320 days after sustaining an ACL tear during the 2022 playoffs.
“It’s fantastic to have Claire back. She’s a great addition to our offensive attack. She is a very creative player, she wants to combine and she has fantastic technique that we can use as well.” Coach Sjöblom added, “Stine was great with headers and won the balls when we wanted to push higher and press higher, and she was really good in the second half.”
Just before halftime, rookie Michelle Cooper received a yellow card for a tactical foul at midfield. With her fifth yellow card of the season, the forward will be suspended for Kansas City’s next regular season match against the San Diego Wave. She will be available for selection in Wednesday’s UKG Challenge Cup Semifinal match against the North Carolina Courage.
The Current returns to Children’s Mercy Park to face the North Carolina Courage in the 2023 UKG NWSL Cup Semifinal on Wednesday. With a win, the Current will host the Challenge Cup final on Saturday, September 9. The next regular season match takes the Current on the road to visit the San Diego Wave on September 26. Tickets are available for all home matches at Children’s Mercy Park. For pricing and information, visit kansascitycurrent.com.
NWSL Match Report
Match: Kansas City Current vs. Angel City FC
Date: September 1
Venue: Children’s Mercy Park, Kansas City, KS
Kickoff: 7:07 pm CT
Weather: 85 degrees, sunny
12’ Kansas City Assistant Coach (Yellow)
40’ Kansas City – Cooper (Yellow)
90+7’ Kansas City – Del Fava (Yellow)
66’ Angel City – Spencer (Le Bihan)
Kansas City Current Lineup: Franch, Rodriguez, Robinson, Ball (46’ Ballisager), Del Fava, Loera (80’ Lavogez), Kizer (90+2’ Larsson), LaBonta, Debinha, Cooper (90+2’ Spaanstra), Hamilton © (46’ Mace)
Unused Substitutes: Miller, Winebrenner, Merrick, Lauren
Angel City FC Lineup: Anderson, Vignola, Nielsen, Gorden, Spencer, Weatherholdt © (68’ Henry), Hammond (82’ Leroux), Camberos (68’ Endo), McCaskill (68’ Johnson), Emslie (57’ Thompson), Le Bihan
Unused Substitutes: Isenhour, Riley, Reid, Nabet