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Preview: Kansas City looks to clinch playoff spot as they host the Spirit

Win and they are in as Current battle in a congested playoff race

Thad Bell

Match: Kansas City Current (9-5-6, 33 pts) vs Washington Spirit (3-7-10, 19 pts)

When: Sunday, Sept. 25th at 4 p.m. CT

Where: Children’s Mercy Park – Kansas City

Watch: Paramount + (International Twitch)

Listen: N/A

The Kansas City Current (9-5-6, 33 pts) have some rest after three games in a week before getting a week break between games. That stretch saw the end of their thirteen-game unbeaten streak before bouncing back with a draw in their third game. Now it is the Washington Spirit (3-7-10, 19 pts) on their third match in a week in three different parts of the country.

Despite the Spirit’s poor record, they are not a team that can be overlooked, they lost against Angel City FC 2-1 four days ago but had two wins and a draw in their previous three matches. The Spirit are stacked with international-level players led by Ashley Hatch, Ashley Sanchez, Trinity Rodman, and more so they can not be taken lightly.

Last Meeting: The Current took a 1-0 win on the road when CeCe Kizer was able to knock the ball across the line after it bounced around in the box. The Spirit looked the better team in the stats, but the Current showed they were a team that finds ways to win.

Current can clinch a playoff spot Sunday

If the Current secure all three points with a win over the Spirit they will clinch a playoff spot for the first time since the franchise came back to Kansas City in 2021. A draw and some other results could also clinch a playoff spot. With most of the league battling for a playoff spot and jockeying for where they finish, the Spirit is one of only four teams eliminated.

Scoring by committee and the team Golden Boot race

The Current have three players tied with six goals: Lo’eau LaBonta, CeCe Kizer, and Kristen Hamilton. They are quickly followed by Hailie Mace with four and Elyse Bennett with three. The last time one of the goal leaders scored, all three scored to keep it level.

Coach thoughts on the opponent

Current head coach Matt Potter praised their opponent when speaking with media this week, “Washington to me is obviously one of the elite teams, their roster is incredibly deep, they’ve gone through a coaching change and sometimes that can inspire. They’ve got the talent and haven’t lost since the change and hadn’t lost very many before the change. The reality is they’ve never not been a good team so we expect another difficult NWSL game.”


KC Current


Jaycie Johnson (right leg)

Sam Mewis (SEI- right leg)

Mallory Weber (SEI- right leg)

Lynn Williams (SEI- right leg)



Washington Spirit


Tori Huster (SEI- left lower leg)

Kelley O’Hara (hip)

Emily Sonnett (SEI- foot)




Kansas City Current forward Kristen Hamilton — The Current have three players tied with six goals, but Hamilton may be the one to watch. She has played the most minutes, only subbing off a couple of times but still running and going all out through stoppage time. If Kansas City needs a late goal, Hamilton is likely to step up in the needed moment.

Kansas City Current forward Elyse Bennett – Bennett is typically a second-half substitute using her strength and speed to create chaos with the opponent’s backline. Bennett has come close to adding to her goal total lately and facing a tired team should give her some good chances on goal.

Washington Spirit forward Ashley Hatch — Washington’s Hatch leads the Spirit with nine goals and can be dangerous anytime she gets an opportunity. She earned a penalty and then took it herself in their last match at Angel City FC.