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Challenge Cup Match Preview: CHI v. KC

2021 NWSL Challenge Cup, presented by Secret Deodorant - Match 3 Chicago Red Stars vs Kansas City SeatGeek Stadium, Bridgeview, IL April 21st at 5:30 PM CT CHICAGO - The Chicago Red Stars play their second consecutive home match in the 2021 NWSL Challenge Cup as they welcome Kansas City to SeatGeek Stadium on Wednesday, April 21st at 5:30 p.m. CT. Where to Watch Stream: Paramount+, Twitch (International) Previous Matchups CHI: The Red Stars looked to have momentum going into the second half of their April 15th matchup against Portland, almost being the beneficiaries of goal attempts from Kealia Watt and rookie Tatumn Milazzo (her first professional start). The Thorns would be the only goal scorers in the game, however, winning the game 1-0 off of a second-half Morgan Weaver strike. KC: Kansas City last played on the opening night of the Challenge Cup, taking part in the late game against Portland on April 9th. Amy Rodriguez, who was a part of Kansas City in their previous run in the league, scored the only goal for the team as they fell 2-1 to the Thorns. Wednesday’s matchup against Chicago will be Kansas City’s second matchday in the Challenge Cup.

Storylines Welcome Back, KC: This matchup marks the first time the Red Stars will be hosting Kansas City since 2017. Both Chicago and Kansas City (at one point known as FC Kansas City) were part of the inaugural eight teams of the National Women’s Soccer League in 2013, making this the second straight week that the Red Stars will be taking on another founding member of the league. In their last game against Kansas City, the Red Stars and then-FCKC played to a scoreless draw in Kansas City, Missouri on September 9th, 2017. Her Kind of Moment: Last week saw the first professional start for Tatumn Milazzo, making her debut in the starting XI in her home state. Starting alongside fellow Illinois natives Casey Krueger and Sarah Gorden, the Orland Park native would almost break the scoreless deadlock midway through the first half in her second appearance on the field for the club. League Legends: In addition to being two of the founding members of the league, both Kansas City and Chicago lay claim to positions in the top 20 of some of the league’s all-time statistics coming into 2021. Kansas City’s Amy Rodriguez (224) and Chicago’s Kealia Watt (196) enter this year 10th and 16th respectively in all-time shots in the league, Chicago’s Vanessa DiBernardo comes in as the league’s all-time corner kick taker (324) and sixth all-time in assists (20), and both team's roster keepers who are amongst the best ever. Chicago’s Alyssa Naeher and KC’s Nicole Barnhart are consistently found in the top three all-time spots in games started, minutes played, shutouts, and saves.

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