To say that Sky Blue had a good game last week would be stretching the truth by quite some distance. Sky Blue only met their peak performance after Kelley O’Hara entered onto the field at the start of the second half. Prior to her inclusion the team failed to demonstrate team cohesion which resulted in poor exchanges and half-hearted offensive pursuits into the box.
The SBFC defense cannot fall privy to another sloppy performance such as this because Seattle will respond by stampeding into their box and shaking Cameron’s confidence early on. Sky Blue needs to deploy Brittany Bock as soon as she is cleared to play. Bock is an intimidating midfielder that would make it challenging for any opposition to push past her. In addition she has great control of the ball, which is something SBFC lacked on Wednesday.
SBFC will either need to play smart and use different formation that would better suit the midfielders available, or they will need to resort physical play on Saturday against Seattle. The Reign is recognized for their physical approach to the game in particular Keelin Winters, Jessica Fishlock and Elli Reed. Seattle enters Saturdays match with a chip on their shoulder; they have yet to win a game this season and have lost three out of four of their fixtures.
Seattle’s objective will be to lock out SBFC’s leading goal scorer Schmidt, cut out exchanges between De Vanna and O’Hara, and take advantage of Johnson's poor defending. Unfortunately, they may not be able to maneuver around Caitlin Foord, who is instrumental in getting the ball down the field for O’Hara, and her quick feet might be a challenge for Christine Nairn.
Seattle’s strongest player is Michelle Betos. Her great performance between the posts was a contributing factor for why FC Kansas City only penetrated the net once in a match they completely dominated. Seattle enters their fifth match of the season with a 0-1-3 record, and Sky Blue maintains their fourth spot in the competition with a 2-1-1 lead.
Sky Blue FC Injuries
IN DOUBT: Jill Loyden, Brittany Bock
Seattle Reign FC Injuries
OUT: Hope Solo (wrist), Megan Rapinoe (overseas), Amy Rodriguez (pregnant). IN DOUBT: Lindsay Taylor
Match Date/Time: May 11, 2013 7:00 PM
Venue: Yurcak Field Stadium, Piscataway, NJ
Online: NWSL Soccer YouTube Channel