Portland Thorns ready for NWSL title match Saturday

(courtesy NWSL)

Rose City soccer fans are in for an exciting weekend as the Portland Thorns gear up for the National Women's Soccer League championship title game in Orlando.

The team will take on the North Carolina Courage as they attempt to win their second NWSL championship.

The team left Portland International Airport early Wednesday morning, with Alaska Airlines giving the team a special send-off and decking out the plane complete with Thorns scarves on every seat.

Speaking to the media Friday, head coach Mark Parsons said his club is ready to cap off a strong season with a win.

"It's been a great season and a great journey for us. I think the best part of it has been that there’s been good ups and downs, good challenges,” he said. “There have been games were unhappy with our performance. There’s been time’s where I’ve got it wrong. And I think through that process we've got stronger, we’ve evolved and we’ve continued to move forward.”

“I think, just as a team, we are flying right now. We haven’t lost in two or three months… We’re peaking at the right time,” forward Christine Sinclair added. “For so long it’s been our team defense that’s won us games, so it was nice last weekend to put some balls in the back of the net and have a convincing victory, especially in front of our fans. It was a perfect send-off.”

The Thorns won the inaugural NWSL championship in 2013 and took the NWSL Shield as the best regular-season club last year.

Kickoff for the match in Orlando Saturday is 1:30 p.m. PDT, with national coverage on the Lifetime network.

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