After a pause for the international break, the NWSL Playoffs return with the championship just one week away. Before that, though, four teams will duke it out in Sunday’s semifinal matchups. After securing first-round byes, the San Diego Wave and Portland Thorns play for the first time in three weeks with their respective semifinal matchups. The Shield-winning Wave host OL Reign on Megan Rapinoe’s farewell tour, while the Thorns will welcome NJ/NY Gotham FC as Ali Krieger plays the final matches of her career.
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NWSL playoff structure
The playoffs began with two quarterfinal matchups, when the Reign beat postseason newcomers Angel City 1-0 and Gotham scored their first-ever NWSL playoff victory in a 2-0 win over the North Carolina Courage. The Reign will now take on the Wave, while the Thorns will host Gotham.
The winners of the two semifinal matches will then meet at San Diego’s Snapdragon Stadium for the championship game on Nov. 11.
NWSL Playoff Schedule
All times Eastern
NWSL playoff picks – Attacking Third
NWSL playoff picks – CBSSports.com writers
Thorns vs. Gotham
by Sandra Herrera
- Matchup to watch: Sam Coffey vs. Yazmeen Ryan
- Most likely goal scorer: Hina Sugita
- Potential surprising performance: Jenna Nighswonger
- Player of the match: Crystal Dunn
- Prediction: Thorns 2-1
Wave vs. Reign
by Sandra Herrera
- Matchup to watch: Kyra Carusa vs. Jess Fishlock
- Most likely goal scorer: Jaedyn Shaw
- Potential surprising performance: Taylor Kornieck
- Player of the match: Jaedyn Shaw
- Prediction: Wave 2-1