The Orlando Pride have done what seven other NWSL teams failed to do — beat the Washington Spirit. The Pride’s 2-1 home victory over the Spirit on Saturday night raised eyebrows all over the NWSL, but it is exactly what Seb Hines and his players expected to happen. The Pride have shown a remarkable amount of confidence over the course of the last four games — all without a loss (3-0-1) — and it suddenly doesn’t seem implausible that the team that began the season 0-4-0 could actually make a playoff run in 2023. But then again, it’s the hope that kills you.
For the time being, let’s just bask in the glow of an unbeaten run that at least has Orlando in a respectable position after a poor start to the season. The main difference seems to be a much stouter defense, combined with a reinvigorated Anna Moorhouse in goal. It didn’t hurt that Marta provided some much-needed offensive help on Saturday. We break down a win that we didn’t anticipate against the previously unbeaten Washington side and select our Player of the Match.
One of the players responsible for the Pride’s improved defense joins us for this show. Defender Emily Madril is spending her first season wearing Orlando purple and she has overcome an inconsistent and sometimes shaky start to the season to grow into the team. We spoke to the former Florida State Seminole about her assimilation into the Pride, overcoming that slow start, what she’s learned about the NWSL since joining the league, and more.
After our chat with Emily, we had quite a few mailbagbox questions to answer, and we appreciate all who wrote in. You can ask us anything by hitting us up on Twitter at either @TheManeLand or @SkoPurpSoccer and using the hashtag #AskSkoPurp. Or you can visit our show page, scroll down, and fill out the handy form.
Finally, we gave our key matchups and score predictions for the Pride’s trip to play the Chicago Red Stars this Saturday night.
Here’s how Episode 7 went down:
0:15 – The Pride stretched their unbeaten streak to four, having had to go through league leaders Gotham and Washington to do so, which is a good sign.
14:06 – Emily Madril joins us and tells it like it is.
30:22 – Our mailbagbox was far from empty, and we provided our key matchups and score predictions for Saturday’s game at the Chicago Red Stars.