Houston Dash Begin New Era Under Interim Head Coach on Saturday against Chicago

July 15, 2022 – National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) – Houston Dash News Release

The Houston Dash return to PNC Stadium to host the Chicago Red Stars on Saturday, July 16. Kickoff is slated for 7:30 p.m. CT and will be streamed live on Twitch. Tickets for Saturday’s game are available here with no fees, courtesy of SeatGeek.

Dash interim head coach Juan Carlos Amorós will make his NWSL coaching debut on Saturday evening against Chicago. Amorós was named Houston’s interim head coach on June 15 and will lead the team for the remainder of the season. Amorós brings more than 10 years of experience to the Dash after coaching in the top Spanish and English women’s leagues, with Real Betis and Tottenham Hotspurs, respectively. Amorós held his first training session with the team on Tuesday, July 12 and arrived in Houston last week.

Saturday’s match marks the first time Chicago and Houston will meet in the regular season. However, it won’t be the first meeting of the year. Dash and the Red Stars were in the same Challenge Cup group during the preseason tournament, which began in April. The Red Stars took the opening match of the tournament on March 20 at PNC Stadium after Chicago came back from a 1-0 deficit to win 3-1. Defender Katie Naughton, who was acquired from Chicago in 2020, scored the opening goal of the 2022 campaign in that match. Less than two weeks later the two teams met again in Bridgeview, IL. A brace from USWNT star Mallory Pugh gave the Red Stars three points in the second meeting of the year.

The Dash are hoping to rebound from a 1-0 loss on the road to Orlando on July 8. The loss marked the first time this season Houston was unable to grab points on the road. Goalkeeper Jane Campbell played a key role in keeping the game scoreless throughout the first 79 minutes of the match. The sixth-year goalkeeper out of Stanford made six saves against the Pride. Orlando scored the lone goal of the match after a deflection off a Dash defender got past Campbell. Midfielder Natalie Jacobs earned her first start for the Dash in the match and her second career NWSL regular season start.

Chicago is coming off a 2-2 draw against North Carolina at home. Heading into second half stoppage time, the Red Stars were trailing the Courage 2-0. In the 90+1 minute, Chicago’s Sarah Griffith scored to cut into the Courage’s lead. Three minutes later Amanda Kowalski scored the equalizer in the fourth minute of stoppage time to force a draw and steal a point from North Carolina.

The Dash return to league play on July 31 against NJ/NY Gotham FC in Harrison, New Jersey at Red Bull Arena. Kickoff is slated for 4:00 p.m. CT and will be streamed live on Paramount+ and Twitch (Intl.)

Here are three key points ahead of Friday’s match:

CAMPBELL KEY IN GOAL: Dash goalkeeper Jane Campbell is continuing to have a stellar season in goal for Houston. The sixth-year pro, who is nearing 100 regular season matches, is fourth in the league in total saves this season, ahead of all three goalkeepers currently with the USWNT. The Dash co-captain is also tied for the third most clean sheets this season with Kailen Sheridan of San Diego and is three clean sheets away from moving into fifth all-time in league play at 20.

INTERNATIONAL ROUND-UP: Several of Houston’s players are still with their respective national team competing in international tournaments across the globe. In Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico, four of Houston’s players are competing in the Concacaf W Championship. Canada won their group, which means that Sophie Schmidt, Nichelle Prince and Allysha Chapman advanced to the knockout stage where they beat Jamica 3-0 on July 14. Chapman scored her second career goal for Canada in the 64th minute off a header. Maria Sanchez and Mexico were unable to make it out of the group stage and Sanchez will be eligible for selection on Saturday. In Africa at the Women’s African Cup of Nation’s tournament forward Michelle Alozie with Nigeria and forward Michaela Abam with Carmeron are facing off in the semifinals. Nigeria took the 1-0 victory on Thursday afternoon. Forward Rachel Daly and England have also advanced to the knockout stage of the UEFA Women’s Euro tournament, which is being held in England.

CHICAGO’S ATTACK: Despite missing forward Mallory Pugh, who is on international duty with the United States Women’s National Team, the Red Stars have found ways to produce goals and create chances. Pugh leads the Red Stars in scoring with six goals so far this season, which is third best in the league. Chicago’s Ella Stevens is currently leading the team in goals, in Pugh’s absence, with three goals. Since returning from the international break Chicago has outscored its opponents 5-2, including a 3-0 win over NJ/NY Gotham FC on July 2. Furthermore, each of those goals have been scored by five different players on the Chicago roster.

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