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Portland Thorns at Chicago Red Stars: Preview, how to watch, match thread [5:00]

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The Thorns taking on the Red Stars in preseason.

The Portland Thorns (fourth place, 15 points, 4-4-3) take on thThe Portland Thorns take on the Chicago Red Stars (fifth place, 15 points, 3-3-6) tonight at 5:00 at Toyota Park in Chicago hoping to bounce back after a dispiriting loss to the North Carolina Courage. Hayley Raso is in line to get her first Thorns minutes of 2018 and Emily Sonnett is probable to return. Meanwhile Tobin Heath and Midge Purce have been ruled out, and AD Franch traveled with the team but is not ready to return yet. This will be the first game broadcast on the NWSL’s new ESPNEWS deal.

Storylines

“The Thorns midfield are going to have to up their game in order to get a result. Julie Ertz is a great player making runs into the box and scoring but she can be pressured off the ball in possession: Christine Sinclair will have to assert herself, and she’s proven more than capable of doing that against USWNT level midfielders this season so far. On the flanks, Arin Gilliland is typically a top player going forward but seems to have drifted out of form in part due to being played out of position for most of the start of the year. Klingenberg’s running will be essential to pinning her back and drawing Chicago’s defender’s out of position on the overlap, and her service into the box (still the best in the team) should help bring Raso into play in her first game of the season.”

Match Information

Watch it on: ESPNEWS, NWSLsoccer.com internationally

When: Saturday, June 16 at 5:00 pm PT

Where: Toyota Park, Chicago, IL

Portland Thorns: 4-4-3, fourth in the league, lost 1-4 vs North Carolina Courage

Chicago Red Stars: 3-3-6, fifth in the league, won 0-2 at Washington Spirit