Kansas City NWSL extended their unbeaten streak at home to seven straight games when they drew 1-1 with NJ/NY Gotham Friday night. The visitors were one of the hottest teams in the NWSL coming in with a five game undefeated streak and battling for a playoff position but Kansas City held their own with Gotham FC.
Gotham FC came out strong for the first few minutes but Kansas City quickly established themselves and the match was back and forth with neither side getting the better of the other until the 25th minute.
Kansas City defender Hailie Mace’s pass was picked off by McCall Zerboni. The Gotham midfielder quickly slid it forward for Margaret Purce. She drove into the KC box before unleashing a rocket to the back post past Katelyn Rowland.
“We were disappointed we gave up that goal,” Manager Huw Williams explained. “It was just a careless pass, a little too casual at the back. Up until then I thought we had the better of the half at that point.
By design, Kansas City tried to respond quickly, creating a couple good chances almost right away. They have focused on key moments, goals for and against and “making sure to get on the front foot for the next five minutes.”
Kristen Hamilton was pressuring Gotham FC’s backline, working runs past the defensive line with a couple good opportunities that did not find net. One of those runs did draw a penalty when Gotham defender Erica Skroski took Hamilton down in the box. Kristen Edmonds stepped to the spot and banged home her first goal of the season past the Gotham keeper to level it in the 45th minute.
Kansas City came out strong to start the second half with Hamilton, Darian Jenkins and the rest of the squad pushing for a winner. Only two starting field players did not register a shot, both of them defenders.
With seven missing players for International Duty, Kansas City was missing key players all over the field, all of them starters or key subs.
“Really proud of our players,” Williams stated. “Many teams based on what position we are would have unfortunately given up and not played as hard as we are going into the end of the season. A coach can’t ask for any more than our players are giving.”
With the draw, Gotham is the only team to have never beaten Kansas City NWSL.
Random KC NWSL fact tonight, Gotham FC is the only team to not beat KC this season. KC got 2 draws against them.— Mike (@downthebyline) October 23, 2021
Are we calling this “rivalry” the “Battle of four states” or “Four State Derby”?