Wednesday, November 29, 2023

OL Reign vs NJ/NY Gotham FC live stream: How to watch NWSL Championship, odds, prediction, time

A new NWSL champion will be crowned on Sunday. As the league prepares to close the chapter on the 2023 season, OL Reign and NJ/NY Gotham FC will square off in the NWSL Championship at Snapdragon Stadium in San Diego, California. The fourth seeded Reign are three-time NWSL Shield winners, but have never lifted the trophy and sixth ranked Gotham are 2021 Challenge Cup runners-up, meaning a victory for either side would be their first-ever NWSL Championship win. 

Last month, the league unveiled a new trophy for the event, redesigned in collaboration with Tiffany & Co. and the eventual winners will lift it for the first time at the conclusion of the final. Fans can watch the NWSL Championship action on CBS.

The game itself looks to have the makings of an absolutely classic. After stagnant form to close out the regular season, OL Reign have been punching above their fourth-place finish throughout the playoffs. They took down a blazing-hot Angel City side during the quarterfinals and eliminated the 2023 NWSL Shield winners San Diego Wave FC in the semifinals. Head coach Laura Harvey and her team were previously in the Championship final in 2014 and 2015, but she’s expressed that being back in this moment feels different. 

Former USWNT player and two-time World Cup champion Megan Rapinoe announced her retirement earlier this year and will step away from professional play at the conclusion of her club season. Plenty of eyes will be on her for this final game, but her fellow USWNT teammate Rose Lavelle returned triumphantly to the team during the semifinal and will have a critical role in opening up attacking lanes.

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Across the field, this Gotham side have their eyes set on a “worst to first” narrative heading into the final after closing out the 2022 season in last place. Now they’re one step closer to adding their first NWSL hardware to the club’s trophy cabinet. Through organized play and new head coach Juan Carlos Amorós, who just took down the head coach of the year award, they’re one step closer to an NWSL Championship.

Amoros has had Gotham deploying an impressive defensive press throughout their season and has perfected their tactics in the playoffs.  The club is leading the league in possessions won (1554) and shots faced (205). While Lynn Williams leads the team with goals scored (7), the offense has been spread around, with eight goal-scorers with at least two or more goals this year. 

Here’s everything you need to know about the game:

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Viewing info

  • Date: Saturday, Nov. 11 | Time: 8 p.m. ET
  • Place: Snapdragon Stadium — San Diego, California
  • TV: CBS

NWSL Championship broadcast schedule

All times EDT

  • 6 PM: Pregame coverage (CBS Sports Golazo Network and Paramount+)
  • 7:30: Pregame (CBS and Paramount+ premium)
  • 8 PM: NWSL Championship: (CBS and Paramount+ premium)

Playoff rules

The NWSL postseason is a knockout-round format. Six teams advanced to the playoffs with three rounds of competition including two first round matches, two semifinal games (Nov. 5), and the NWSL Championship (Nov. 11). Each playoff game will be 90 minutes of regulation, and if the score is tied, two 15-minute periods of extra time will be played. If the two periods of extra-time has not determined a winner, then a penalty kick shootout will take place. 

Players to watch

Veronica Latsko (OL Reign): The attacking midfielder has recorded two game-winning goals for the Reign in their last two playoff rounds. She’s tied with Bethany Balcer for most goals scored on the team (6), and her teammates credit her with an energetic work ethic. She’s capable of finding her way through tight spaces, and that will make her a sneakily dangerous threat for the team during the final.

Don’t miss CBS Sports Golazo Network’s Morning Footy, now in podcast form! Our crew brings you all the news, views, highlights and laughs you need to follow the Beautiful Game in every corner of the globe, every Monday-Friday all year long.

Midge Purce (Gotham FC): The right winger is second on the team in goals scored this season (4) and in expected goals (4.24). The numbers are that much more impressive as she’s only been available for 14 appearances this season. On a per 90 minutes played scale, nobody is ahead of Purce’s 0.39 xG. Purce has had to navigate a lingering injury this year, but her presence on the pitch makes the team better. 

What they’re saying

Sofia Huerta on Reign getting back to the final with Laura Harvey: “Everyone that’s in this position, it’s been hard right, but Laura, it’s so hard to be a coach. If you win, it’s the players. If you lose, it’s the coach. I think it’s a really difficult job to be in, and I think as a team, it’s really important for us to win this for her for sure. Because she’s been a great manager all year. There have been times when we haven’t performed, and it’s on us. For the game coming up, she trusts me, and that helps me a lot, but we also just all really trust each other too. Anyone who’s on the ball I trust is going to make something special happen.”

Midge Purce, on Gotham heading to the final: “We jokingly say from worst to first, but I don’t think we ever really looked at ourselves as the worst. We just know, and have known, that we could do it. And I think for there to be this redemptive tone, we would have to really be trying to bounce back from something but this is a new group. It’s a new coaching staff. It’s completely new, so we more feel like we have nothing to lose and something to prove.”


The two sides have played to narrow scorelines before so no surprises if this game will be similar. Pick: OL Reign 2, Gotham 1

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