Angel City FC heads into the Olympic break with loss to Gotham FC

LOS ANGELES — The good news for Angel City Football Club is that there is still time and they’re within striking distance of a playoff spot.

The reality, however, is that with their current form, Angel City doesn’t have the look of a playoff team and has a lot of work to do.

Gotham FC (9-3-4, 31 points) scored twice in the first half and held for a 2-1 win at BMO Stadium, despite a spirited Angel City second-half effort in front of 16,542 Saturday.

“We have to take that the second half scrappiness and desire and willing to compete into the second half (of the season),” ACFC coach Becki Tweed said. “We saw it in the second half (Saturday), but it was 45 minutes late.”

Angel City (4-9-3, 15 points) caught a big break in the 68th minute as Gotham FC’s Mandy Freeman fouled Gisele Thompson in the penalty area. After video review, referee Katja Koroleva confirmed the foul, giving Angel City a penalty kick. Claire Emslie stepped up and converted the kick, making the score 2-1.

Unfortunately for Angel City, after that, they were unable to put Gotham under any sustained pressure. On the other end, Gotham nearly put the game away in the 88th minute on a Lynn Williams strike that hit the crossbar.

Gotham opened the scoring in the 16th minute on a goal from Rose Lavelle. In the 40th minute, Delanie Sheehan made it 2-0 with an easy tap-in, setting up what appeared to be an easy Gotham FC evening.

Angel City didn’t create enough series chances to put the Gotham FC defense under any serious pressure. Angel City had just two shots on goal, while Gotham FC had nine.

“We want to win every game, we want to strive to win every game that we play,” Tweed said. “The best part with this league, you can’t be disappointed for long and we have a real opportunity the second half of this season. We know what we have to.”

Gotham FC won the first meeting between the teams 3-0, June 8.

Angel City lost last week to Orlando Pride 3-0. The Pride is tied for first place in the NWSL. Gotham is in fourth place.

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