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OptaPro publishes NWSL regular season review

By: Mike Morrison

Following the recent release of the 2019 MLS season review, OptaPro has now published a comprehensive review focusing on the NWSL regular season.

The review can be found here.

By applying detailed Opta event data collected from every game played in the US women’s top flight, OptaPro’s NWSL review highlights key stylistic differences between teams across the division, both with and without the ball.

At player level, the application of advanced shooting and passing metrics also provide new insights into decision-making in front of goal, as well as the quality of chances created. The review also incorporates detailed analysis on standout goalkeeping performances.

Key findings include:

– From open play, Shield winners North Carolina Courage took 361 shots, 25% more than the next highest team, helping them record the highest xG output in the division (42.98).

– Whilst Portland Thorns demonstrated strength offensively during set plays, creating over 25% of their xG output from dead ball situations, they struggled to keep the ball out of the net from defensive set pieces. They conceded eight goals from set plays, the joint-highest of any NWSL team together with bottom-placed side Orlando Pride.

– Sam Kerr was involved 26 open play sequences ending in a goal, more than any other player. She was also involved in 55 shot-ending sequences where she wasn’t the shooter, illustrating her all-round involvement in attacking build-up play.

– Sky Blue’s Kailen Sheridan is the stand-put goalkeeping performer, with a Goals Prevented Rate of 1.36.

You can read the full NWSL review here. Each section includes several interactive tables and graphics, including pitch maps and goalmouth templates, to provide further context to the findings.

All of OptaPro’s season reviews published in 2019, covering leading competitions across North America and Europe, are available to view here.

If you have any questions relating to our findings, please get in touch with us on