Thorns FC: Into the New Year

I hope you come back and visit here in about three weeks, when I’ll be discussing the January 2017 NWSL draft.  Not that Thorns FC looks set to make news there: first pick fourth in the second round and 14th overall.  No first round picks, one more second rounder (19th), one third (27th) and dead last (40th).

But.

Given the wild dealing last season?  Who knows?  Merritt and Gavin may have devised a cunning plan to snare some quality that is more cunning than a cunning fox appointed Dean of Cunning at Cunning University..!

cunning-fox

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Thorns FC: Talking Thorns – the backline and keepers

So far we’ve looked at Thorns FC at forward and midfield, and what we’ve seen has looked good.  But while scoring and passing and cute juggling tricks are all fun to watch, and, yes, you often hear it said that “if you don’t score you can’t win”…

em-menges

…but the other side of that aphorism is that if you don’t concede you can’t lose, and many championship teams win championships through tough defending and outstanding goalkeeping.

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Thorns FC: Talking Thorns – The Midfield

Last week we looked at Thorns FC’s striking corps.  This week we take a look at what we have in the center of the pitch, and speculate on what might happen in the off- and upcoming season.

long-and-shim

On the morning of November 7 Thorns FC has a total of seven midfielders under contract.  The real question in my mind would be “which of these midfielders do what?”, so let’s look at them grouped into their roles.

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Thorns FC: Second Intermission

USWNT Swe Rio

In the words of MayaTye over at Stumptown Footy…gee, that really worked well, didn’t it..?

The good news is that the Thorns will be getting all of their internationals back except for Christine Sinclair (who plays for bronze this coming Friday).  The…well, I won’t pretend that it’s “bad news”.  For me, anyway.

And you know what that is.

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Thorns FC: Good news, bad news

I always hate it when the person telling you this asks: “Which one do you want first?”Haney visa

I’ll give you the good news: that’s Amandine Henry there on the left and that’s her U.S. visa in her hand.

That’s right; out long-awaited defensive midfielder is arriving in Portland most quick smart.

To clear a roster spot for Henry Kendall Johnson has been moved to the DL; she’s listed as “not medically cleared” on the 6/10 list.  That clears up who’s going to get shifted to make room.

(Selfishly – since for all that I hammered on her pretty hard here last week – I was fairly sure that if the Front Office decided to waive someone (or trade someone for draft picks/international slots) that Mana Shim would pick the black marble.  I’m glad she didn’t.  But, still…c’mon, Mana.  We need to see some Marta from you, girlfriend.)

My next question is; how are the Thorns going to look this coming Friday?

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