Leesburg, VA., (08/05/2021) — The Washington Spirit are set to play their thirteenth match of the 2021 regular season against the Portland Thorns on Saturday, August 7 at 7:30 p.m. ET at Segra Field. The game will be streamed on Paramount+ in the United States and on Twitch for international fans.
Here are some interesting stats to take note of ahead of Saturday’s meeting:
1 – Year Since the Spirit Have Faced the Thorns
At the halfway point of the 2021 regular season, Washington has yet to face off against this west coast foe. More notably, it has been more than a year since the two squads have played one another. In their last meeting on July 5 in the 2020 Challenge Cup, the Spirit and the Thorns played to a 1-1 draw where Sam Staab scored in the 77’.
5 – Point Lead for the Thorns at the Top of the NWSL Standings
The Thorns have maintained their top-of-the-table status for a few weeks, which has resulted in their five-point lead on the rest of the league. Following their 2-0 win over Kansas City last week, Portland reaffirmed their comfortable edge. The key for this team has been consistency and producing quality results each week. The Spirit will look to close down that lead against the Thorns on Saturday and snap their unbeaten streak at five.
66.5 – Number of Completed Passes Per 90 Minutes for Paige Nielsen
Defender Paige Nielsen, having played a total of 541 minutes after returning from injury this season, has achieved an especially high success rate in the number of completed passes during games. In fact, the center-back has the most completed passes per 90 minutes in the entire league, recording 66.5 passes per 90 minutes — that is, 400 out of 453 total passes this year.
581 – Number of Total Completed Passes for Sam Staab
Alongside Nielsen in the Spirit’s backline, Sam Staab has a similarly impressive passing record as a defender. No player has attempted or completed more passes this season than the 24-year-old, who has completed 581 of her 681 passes. Staab’s overall success rate in terms of pass distribution is 85.3%. As a center-back, she also has recorded one goal this regular season against Racing Louisville FC and has started all 12 matches.