NWSL Cup Final DL

Dash look to capture first championship in NWSL Challenge Cup Final on Sunday

The Houston Dash will feature in the 2020 NWSL Challenge Cup Championship, presented by Budweiser, on Sunday morning when they take on the Chicago Red Stars.  

The match is set for an 11:30 a.m. kickoff and will be televised live nationally on CBS. Locally, the Championship will be seen in Houston on KHOU Ch. 11. 

The Dash, under the leadership of head coach James Clarkson, are set to fight for the first league title in club historyClarkson, who joined the Dash ahead of the 2019 season, told reporters ahead of the match that he expects fans to enjoy the never-say-die attitude his team has exhibited throughout the tournament.  

“There’s a fight about them, there’s a commitment, there’s a determination, and I’m sure that will be on show like it has been. When they really all put it together and they come with that intensity and that desire to want to win and that attitude, it’s really inspiring,” Clarkson said. “I really do think it’s about the personality that

we’ve created within the team and the attitude of we certainly never give in and we fight for everything.” 

 

WHO: 

Houston Dash vs. Chicago Red Stars 

WHAT: 

NWSL Challenge Cup Championship presented by Budweiser 

WHEN: 

Sunday, July 26 – 11:30 a.m. CDT 

STREAM: 

CBS & Twitch 

 

Here are three points ahead of Sunday’s game: 

 

1. A TITLE IS ON THE LINE – For the first time in club history, the Dash will take the field with the opportunity to lift a trophy at the end of the match. Their opponents, the Chicago Red Stars, competed in the NWSL Cup last season, so while they have a bit more experience in this situation than Houston, but Clarkson said he thinks playing in a “bubble” environment levels the field. “I do think there’s a bit of an advantage to it due to the circumstances, and ideally hopefully in the future we can get to experience it at the end of a regular season,” Clarkson told reporters. 

 

2. FOR THE CITY – A common theme throughout the team’s tournament run is the strong team chemistry off the field that has translated onto the field. Leading the team in goals and with the captain armband, Daly has consistently highlighted the desire to win the cup for the city of Houston and what the club jersey stands for. “The city of Houston is going through a really tough time with this pandemic,” said tournament Most Valuable Player Rachel Daly after the semifinal. “For us, it was for them. We want to give them something to look forward to.”  

 

3. FAMILIAR FACES – When the Dash and the Red Stars take the field, Houston’s players will likely see a very familiar face in the opposing lineup – Chicago forward Kealia Watt. Watt played the previous six seasons with Houston and is the team’s all-time leading scorer with 28 goals (one ahead of Daly). On the other side, Red Stars players will see a familiar face of their own in Dash center back Katie Naughton. Naughton, who has started every game for the Dash in the tournament, played for Chicago from 2016-19 and started in the NWSL Cup for the Red Stars a year ago.