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Match Preview 4.20

Match Preview: Courage take on NJ/NY Gotham FC in Second Match of 2021 Challenge Cup

By North Carolina Courage Communications, 04/18/21, 6:00PM EDT

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Match Preview 4.20

Match Info:
NJ/NY Gotham FC vs. North Carolina Courage
Tuesday, April 20 at 6 p.m. ET
MSU Soccer Park at Pittser Field
Montclair, New Jersey

Cary, NC (April 18, 2021) - The North Carolina Courage will hit the road to take on NJ/NY Gotham FC on Tuesday, April 20, at 6 p.m. ET. Both teams are coming off a victory in their respective debuts in the 2021 Challenge Cup presented by Secret Deodorant.

North Carolina looks to add to the win column Tuesday against Gotham FC with a stacked squad following the return of Lynn Williams, Casey Murphy, Denise O’Sullivan and Diane Caldwell from their respective international duties.

Where to Watch: Paramount+

Players to Watch Presented by Jublia

North Carolina Courage - #14 Jessica McDonald

Courage forward Jessica McDonald recorded one goal and one assist in an impactful performance against the Washington Spirit in the first match of the Challenge Cup. In her last regular-season appearance against NJ/NY Gotham FC (10/12/19 — then Sky Blue FC), McDonald scored two goals in three shots on goal for the Courage. The striker was rewarded for her efforts this past week, being named the NWSL’s Budweiser Woman of the Week.

NJ/NY Gotham FC - #4 Paige Monaghan

In her third season with the club, Paige Monaghan has made a strong impact in the attack for the newly rebranded NJ/NY Gotham FC.  In the club's debut match of the 2021 Challenge Cup, Monaghan scored the lone goal of the game, giving her team the win over Orlando Pride. The 25-year-old forward brings speed, technical ability, and crafty movement off the ball, presenting a challenging match-up for any defensive line. 

Last Time Out

The Courage kicked off the tournament with a 3-2 home win over the Washington Spirit on April 10. Forward Jessica McDonald had a standout performance with one goal and one assist, earning herself the title of the NWSL’s Budweiser Woman of the Week. The contest also featured the return of defender Merritt Mathias, who extended the Courage lead with a goal in the 51’. That match marked Mathias’ first appearance in the Courage lineup since her ACL injury in 2019.

What’s Next

Following the match this Tuesday, the Courage will face Racing Louisville FC on Monday, April 26, at Lynn Family Stadium in Louisville, KY, for their third match of the tournament. The team will round out the tournament at home on Saturday, May 1, against the Orlando Pride. Tickets for that game are sold out.

2021 NWSL Challenge Cup

The 2021 NWSL Challenge Cup presented by Secret Deodorant will see the league’s 10 teams organized into two divisions for 21 total matches. Each team will play two matches in their home markets. The club from each division with the most points will then compete in the Challenge Cup Final, scheduled for May 8 on CBS. The championship site will be determined by the league at a later date.

2021 NWSL Challenge Cup Current standings HERE.