It seems like ages ago, we were warmed by the autumn sunshine in the City of Angels, ready and hoping for a happy ending to a turbulent season, our destinies in our own hands, just needing a win over the lowly Angels to nail down the second Shield in three years.
Okay, well. THAT sucked. The Thorns lost the match, lost the Shield, lost their composure and any semblance of looking like an actual playoff club.
It wasn’t so much that Tweed’s Angels outthought or outplayed or outsmarted Norris’ Thorns. They did what they’d been doing since Tweed took over, and Portland just fell before it; they stuck their fist out and the Thorns ran into it face-first.
It sucked, both for the club, the fans, and our punters.
Nobody got the result – Daniel Stratton was the optimist predicting another Decision Day 3-3 draw – and got Jun Endo as one of the ACFC scorers. Sincfan got Savannah McCaskill as assisting rather than scoring but got as much “fun” points as were available from this mess with an LA Story including Alyssa Thompson, Kuikka, and movie stars.
But overall? Whooo, as ugly as the Thorns.
|Campeon de Apertura||Points|
Torneo de Clausura:
|Name||Last Match||This Match||Clausura Total|
So that was the end of the season.
The dreadful finale aside, the Thorns had the playoffs sown up, and for their sins now get NJ/NY Gotham for the second time in three matches. Both clubs had players active over the international break though the weight of international numbers tells against the Thorns in that respect.
Portland and Gotham are all square for the season; Gotham won 2-1 at the Bull in July, and Portland 1-nil here just two matches ago. This will be for the series as well as a ticket to San Diego and the Final.
I won’t pretend to be confident. Gotham is a good side, and I don’t think what worked in October will work against them again. I think there’s a good chance they learned from the loss. I think it’s entirely possible this one goes all the way to PKs – the last match the two teams together barely managed an xG over 1.0 – and that’s assuming that the Thorns defense doesn’t ACFC-grade shit the bed and concede two early goals.
But I’m Eeyore, so that’s my job to be worried. How do you feel?
(Last meeting: October 7, 2023, Providence Park, 1-nil win)
How all this works:
Add a comment to this post. As your first line, put your predicted result, for example 3-1 Thorns.
In the body of your comment, start with the goals and assists, like so:
Kuikka (Free kick)
Next, name the first yellow card recipient: Jess Fishlock
Then a red card. (NOTE: no points awarded for correctly calling a red-card-free match, so take a guess.) Madison Pogarch for mimicking mooning the referee after getting an undeserved yellow.
Make your fun prediction,and give a “thumbs up” to anybody else’s prediction that tickles your fancy: “Pogarch gets the start against her former club. She gets through 70 minutes without fouling her former teammates until she can’t take it anymore. She pushes over Hina, gives Weaver a wedgie, gives Sinc a noogie, then flips off the Riveters and runs out of Providence Park, never to be seen again. The ref issues a red card, which she later contests, and loses.” (h/t to ABell4)
· Correct score: 5 points
· Correct result (draw/win/loss): 3 points
· Each clean sheet: 2 points
· Each goal-scorer: 1 point
· Each FK/PK/assist/lack of assist: 1 point
· Goal/assist bonus: 1 point
· Player with the first yellow card of the match: 1 point
· A player with a red card: 1 point
· Most liked/most outrageously accurate prediction: 2 points
Some ground rules and explanations/clarifications (the fine print):
Comments must be posted before kickoff, but you can edit or amend an earlier prediction right up to the starting whistle.
Keep your scoreline predictions realistic. No crazy scores just to pad out your odds of getting goals and assists.
The goal/assist bonus is an additional point if you predict the correct scorer and assistant on the same goal, for example, you say Hubly scores from a Boureille assist and that is exactly what happens. P.S. if you say exactly that, and it happens, I will hunt you down and buy you a beer!
Be clear whether you think a goal will be unassisted, assisted, or from a PK/FK. Unassisted = no assist, run of play; Assisted = player who got the assist; PK/FK = not in run of play. For the purposes of this thread, Penalty Kick and Free Kick are the same thing. No entry means unassisted.