Chicago Red Stars / FC Kansas City / National Women's Soccer League

PREVIEW: Chicago Red Stars at FC Kansas City

Chicago Red Stars: 1-1-0 (3pts)
FC Kansas City 0-2-1 (1pt)

FC Kansas City is still searching for its first win of the season while the Red Stars look to recover from a one-goal loss suffered on the road last weekend. Kansas City will have two chances to earn that elusive first win as the Blues will play Saturday on the road.

Chicago Red Stars:
Last Match:
April 26 against Washington (L, 1-0)

The Chicago Red Stars are coming off a 1-0 loss over the weekend against the Washington Spirit. The Red Stars opened the season on a bye before topping the Western New York Flash, 1-0, in their season opener.

Rookies Julie Johnston and Vanessa DiBernardo have hooked up for the club’s only goal of the 2014 season and Chicago will look to the talented tandem to generate scoring opportunities against a Kansas City backline that has allowed seven goals on the season in three matches.

Lori Chalupny has been held scoreless in the first two matches of 2014 after leading the Red Stars in scoring in 2013 with five goals.

Goalkeeper Karina LeBlanc ranks second in the league in goals against average at 0.500.

FC Kansas City
Last Match:
April 26 at Portland Thorns FC (L, 3-1)

After finishing second in the regular season last season and losing an overtime nail-biter to Portland, FC Kansas City looked to build upon its 2013 successes. The Blues are winless in their first three matches and, most recently, are coming off a 3-1 loss in a rematch of last year’s NWSL semifinal.

Amy Rodriguez has been a bright spot in Kansas City after being acquired from Seattle in the offseason. Rodriguez made her NWSL debut in the season opener after missing all of 2013 while being pregnant. She has scored twice thus far and drew a penalty kick in Week 2 against Washington.

Lauren Holiday leads the league in shots with 15 and is tied for the league lead in shots on goal with Rodriguez. Both have put seven shots on goal. Holiday led the league last season in scoring with 12 goals but has found the back of the net just once this year, from the penalty spot against Portland.

The Blues’ backline has allowed seven goals in their first three matches—a third of the 22 goals allowed all of last season—and will look to get back on track defensively in their second home match of the season.

INJURY REPORT:

Taryn Hemmings remains unavailable for the Red Stars following offseason ACL reconstruction while Jackie Santacaterina is listed once again as probable for Chicago after having arthroscopic hip surgery in the offseason.

Amy LePeilbet will miss tonight’s match with left knee soreness while U.S. teammates Holiday and Nicole Barnhart are both listed as probable due to illness and right knee inflammation respectively. Nia Williams is also probable with a right ankle sprain.

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