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    Angel City FC hosts Gotham FC in final game before Olympic break
    • July 6, 2024

    The NWSL regular season is moving quickly and, just like last season, Angel City Football Club is in a fight for the playoffs.

    This season, instead of six of 12 teams qualifying, there are eight headed to the playoffs in what is now a 14-team league.

    Angel City (4-8-3, 15 points) enters the final week before the Olympic break in 11th place, but just three points behind Bay FC for the final playoff spot.

    Angel City has 11 games remaining, including Saturday’s second meeting against defending champion NJ/NY Gotham FC.

    “You have to set yourself up going forward with momentum,” ACFC defender Merritt Mathias said after Sunday’s 3-0 loss against Orlando. “We have to show up in our best form. That is what we’re signed up for as professional athletes. If you drop points against teams you shouldn’t drop points against, then you find yourself in a really tough position and that’s where we are now. I think we have to buckle up and get ready for the ride that’s to come.”

    Of the final 11 games, Angel City has six at home (Gotham, Chicago, Seattle, Portland, Washington and Utah) and five on the road (San Diego, Racing Louisville, Seattle, North Carolina and Portland).

    “I think there’s an understanding that at some point people will stop investing if you don’t win games,” Matthias said. “That’s what we’re in the business of. … We want to win, it’s not for a lack of trying, a game like this (last Sunday) and then next against Gotham, it becomes evident that you have to pick up points against Bay … you have to win those games and set yourself up going forward with momentum.

    “It puts a lot of pressure on us as a team, but we have to show up. We’re halfway through and we have to start putting points on the board.”

    International duty calls

    The NWSL has a mandatory break starting Monday through July 14. It will be a busy one for several Angel City players due to international call-ups.

    Ali Riley will be departing to join New Zealand for the upcoming Olympics. Alyssa Thompson (USWNT), Claire Emslie (Scotland) and Rocky Rodriguez (Costa Rica) will be joining their respective national teams during the break. Also, Gisele Thompson will join the U.S. U-20 team for games against Mexico and Kennedy Fuller will be with the U.S. U-17 team for a camp in Atlanta and games against Brazil.

    Summer Cup upcoming

    Angel City will soon turn its attention toward the inaugural NWSL-Liga MX Femenil Summer Cup.

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    The competition will run from July 18 until Aug. 24, with NWSL play on a break. All 14 NWSL teams will compete, along with six Liga MX clubs (Tigres, America, Chivas, Monterrey, Pachuca and Tijuana)

    Angel City is in Group B, along with San Diego Wave FC, Bay FC and Club America. Angel City will open July 20 against Club America at Cal State Fullerton’s Titan Stadium. The second game will be on the road against Bay FC on July 26. The final group stage game is Aug. 1 back at Titan Stadium against San Diego Wave FC.


    When: Saturday, 7 p.m.

    Where: BMO Stadium

    TV: ION

    ​ Orange County Register