Definition of Resilience: Current Keep Rolling

Just when the world thought Matt Potter and Kansas City's luck had come to a close, this inspiring team demonstrated to the league why the Current are not to be messed with heading into the final stretch of the season. In a battle against a determined North Carolina Courage side, Kansas City came back from three one-goal deficits to steal a 4-3 victory on the road, and extend the Current's unbeaten streak to an astounding 10 contests. Kansas City's unbeaten run includes just three draws and wins against the Houston Dash, San Diego Wave, and OL Reign at home. At the moment, Potter has turned a team that lost its two most exciting signings of the offseason into one filled with confidence, and maturity.


From Claire Lavogez's stunner to seal the deal against the Courage to Cece Kizer coming in from Racing Louisville and netting goals in five out of the last seven matches, the Current have continued to get the job done in a multitude of ways. A 2-2 draw against the Pride looked to be the beginning of Kansas City coming back down to Earth, but for the third time this season, the Current have strung together back-to-back victories. Adrianna Franch is making a statement as one of the stars of the season in the NWSL with a plethora of jaw-dropping saves to keep this unforgettable streak alive for Kansas City. Franch is only the fourth goalkeeper in the league this season to collect 50 or more saves.

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Following a back and forth contest against the Courage that ended in a Kansas City win, Potter expressed his thoughts on his team's performance, stating, "Really proud of the group and how we stayed together and hung in there throughout the game in a very, very challenging environment...North Carolina – their pedigree speaks for itself. To go on and win the game, we’re delighted, and we’re very proud right now."


The Current may be in the bottom half of the league in total shots, but the key to this run has been Kansas City forcing goalkeepers to make saves. The Current sit second in shots on target percentage this season behind the Chicago Red Stars. The efficiency of this club so far this season on the counter-attack is remarkable, and with players like Kizer, and Kristen Hamilton, it is no surprise.


Seven matches close out the regular season for Kansas City, but with the team in fourth place in the NWSL in the blink of an eye, the Current could be on their way to the franchise's first-ever playoff berth. It was just a few months ago when Kansas City had lost three matches in a row including the Challenge Cup semifinal, and now Potter in just his first season at the helm is leading a revolution with the progress on and off the pitch since the beginning of the season.


Kansas City has been a team that has pieced itself together throughout the season. It dealt for Kizer and Addisyn Merrick, signed Lavogez just a few weeks ago, and drafted standout forward Elyse Bennett. Since the club announced the opening of its brand-new state-of-the-art training facility on June 27, Kansas City has won five out of six games, including one draw against the Pride. It has to be asked if this privilege that this Current team has been given in the middle of the season has given them a spark physically on the pitch, and on the mental side of things as well. Kansas City is not just saying it wants to be one of the trailblazers in women's football, it is doing its job on and off the pitch in just its second season since joining the NWSL.


Luck seemed to have run out when Kansas City was eliminated from the Challenge Cup, but after several in-season moves and a whole new match prep experience, the Current have taken their game to the next level. Just last season, Kansas City looked like a team searching for an identity, but after a few months of patience, the franchise has taken its first step to becoming a marque women's soccer club around the world.

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An appearance in the postseason in just their second season as a club would make a statement to the NWSL with even more breakthroughs in women's sports on the horizon in the future. Investment is how a franchise can make a women's club grow, and the Longs are putting money into these players, giving them the confidence, knowing the people pushing all the buttons up top are working just as hard as they are. Some owners are not willing to put a lot of their chips in on the women's side, but the Longs are demonstrating that if you do, success and in this case a revolution are bound to follow.


The Current's four out of their next six contests are at home at Children's Mercy Park, a place where Kansas City has not lost all three points since May 8 against the Dash. There are no signs that this team is slowing down at any point, it only seems like this team comes together more than ever when the momentum is not in their favor. They don't have a top-five goal scorer like the Wave or the Red Stars, but the Current possess a plethora of young and experienced players that know how to make the job of the opposition's backline as difficult as possible. The combination of a dynamic player like Lo’eau LaBonta and the pace and decisiveness of Kizer in the frontline make the Current a nightmare to defend.


There are few teams in the NWSL on a run like Kansas City is on at the moment. Despite the Portland Thorns being on an 11-game unbeaten streak, the Current are the team nobody thought would do something this special at the beginning of the season. As one of the most storied franchises in the NWSL, the Thorns are expected to perform at a high level, but a team that lost two superstars in the attack with a first-year head coach, and in their second season as a club is not supposed to find this much success.


In their second season as a club, Houston Dash sat in eighth out of 10 teams at the end of the season, and Racing Louisville this season continues to struggle to find consistent results, sitting down in ninth. What the Current are doing is simply unprecedented, and frankly historic for what the history says for teams that joined the NWSL. There is a long road ahead in both the regular season, and the postseason for Kansas City, but given the position the club is in at the moment, the sky's the limit for success not only this season but for the foreseeable future.


-Caden


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