The Houston Dash passed the first test of the season, last scoring three goals in their season opener and solved a Chicago Red Stars team in the process that had been undefeated against them through the first two seasons of franchise history.
This week the team travels to Orlando facing the latest NWSL expansion team. Unlike the Dash, Orlando has had more than 122 days to field a team and put together a respectable program. The Pride will be intent on showing in front of a an expected record crowd that they can be a force even if it’s only for one game.
Houston has an opportunity to go to 2-0 for the first time in franchise history and here’s what they need to so to achieve that result.
Fearlesss – The Houston Dash must be on unrelenting on every inch of the pitch against Orlando. Poliana must continue to push the attack from behind. Rebecca Moros and Ellie Brush must be physical in their marking. Amber Brooks must remain a beast at the holding mid spot. Andressa must be the “Boss” and control the flow and pace of the game.
Firepower – Houston’s frontline may be young but in just one game they showed the chemistry and talent to push a defense to its limit. Time and time again, Kealia Ohai, Janine Beckie and Rachel Daly got the looks they needed to put shots on goal. This is a group of players that have bought into the code of the three musketeers; “one for all and all for one.”
Each are playmakers with and without the ball. Each are dangerous in their own right but together there is no defense that can contain them. Carli Lloyd must be pushy, forcing her will upon the midfield and backline of Orlando. No one can compare to her when she is on target.
Focus – The Houston Dash must be a team on a mission. They cannot afford to look past this Orlando squad nor rest on their accomplishments of last week. They must be mentally all in.
If not Orlando, will be making history at their expense. Head coach Randy Waldrum is not about to let this moment slip away. He understand that even though it is a long season and this is just game two this is about three points and proving to one and all that they belong in the top echelon of organizations in the NWSL.
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A final thought – Good teams defeat the teams they are expected to beat, but GREAT teams dominate their opponents into submission. They force their will upon others by being fearless and relentless. They dominate because their firepower refuses to be subdued. Great teams remain focused on the prize one moment, one kick, one game at a time from the opening touch to the final whistle with focus and intensity. This is who the Houston Dash want to be and a win against Orlando brings them one step closer to the top of the mountain.