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Championship mentality: Washington Spirit 0, Angel City FC 1

Angel City get first-ever road win against defending champs

NWSL: Angel City FC at Washington Spirit Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

After a tough loss at home last weekend, Angel City FC were on the road against the defending champions, Washington Spirit. This was one of those “litmus test” matches, where we would learn a fair bit about the team and how they respond not only to loss, but having to get a result in a really tough environment, against a really good team. Despite a late downpour, Angel City were able to overcome it all for the close 0-1 win on the road.

Despite coming into the match once again short-handed, ACFC did well to show the inaugural win wasn't a fluke and that this is a team that can hang with the best of them. Trinity Rodman had some great moments, and threatened to find the opener for the home side, but it was the visitors who drew first blood. Christen Press decided to take on the defense herself, and when the opportunity presented itself, she hit the ball pure. Curling around the defender, passed the keeper, nestling into the back of the net. It was art, it also gave ACFC the lead just as the first half was coming to a close.

Angel City did an excellent job defending in the second half. No surprise, the Spirit came out looking for that equalizer, and they did not stop. Not for one second. Despite going on what felt like an endlessly amount of runs, ACFC did well to prevent the home side from peppering the goal too much. More importantly, they did well to close up gaps and prevent any clear looks at the net.

New signing Clarisse Le Bihan was brought on in the second half, making her NWSL debut for Angel City and she opened some eyes. With some nice first touches, and slick passing, she is going to be a real problem for opponents once she settles in and starts building chemistry with those around her.

The first half goal was enough for the victory, with a solid defensive performance in the second half to see out the win. This marks the team’s first-ever regular season win on the road. It also puts them at two wins out of their first three matches to start the inaugural season, having only conceded three goals in the last four matches. The team return home to The Banc next weekend, against KC Current.

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