The North Carolina Courage and Portland Thorns FC will kick off the 2020 NWSL Challenge Cup in Utah on Saturday. The match will get underway at 12:30 p.m. ET on CBS and CBS All Access. The two teams have a history and rivalry that dates back to NWSL championship appearances in 2017 and 2018. Here's how you can watch the match and what to know:
- Date: Saturday, June 27
- Time: 12:30 p.m. ET
- Location: Zions Bank Stadium -- Herriman, Utah
- TV: CBS
- Live stream: CBS All Access
- Odds: North Carolina -163; Draw +275; Portland +320 (via William Hill Sportsbook)
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North Carolina Courage: Led by head coach Paul Riley with big playmakers such as U.S. national team player Crystal Dunn and Brazilian international Debinha, the Courage are poised to make a run for the title. While forward Jessica McDonald is carrying a lingering hamstring injury into the tournament, she is still with the team as the reigning NWSL champions have much of their shield-winning roster returning for the Challenge Cup.
Portland Thorns FC: The Pacific Northwest faithful will wonder how the team will fair with U.S. national team playmaker Tobin Heath opting out of the tournament due to concerns over COVID-19. The added loss of starting goalkeeper and U.S. national team player Adrianna Franch over a knee injury just before the tournament is an additional obstacle. Canadian international Christine Sinclair, U.S. national team player Lindsey Horan, and Costa Rican international Rocky Rodriguez will be players to watch.
North Carolina's chemistry and ability in front of goal will likely put the Courage on top in a low scoring affair. Pick: North Carolina Courage 2, Portland Thorns FC 1.
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