KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Several Women’s World Cup champions faced off Monday night in front of a sold-out crowd at Swope Soccer Village, where FC Kansas City took on the Houston Dash.
There are seven national-team players between the two teams who helped the U.S. defeat Japan 5-2 in the FIFA Women’s World Cup earlier this month, setting the stage for a highly anticipated match up in KC.
“Coming back from the World Cup and seeing this crowd, it’s incredible,” said Kat Lowe, a member of the Blue Crew fan section. “It’s just absolutely incredible.”
Fans at Monday’s game roared into applause when FCKC players Becky Sauerbrunn, Lauren Holiday, Heather O’Reilly and Amy Rodriguez were honored before the game for bringing home the title.
Three national-team players from the Houston Dash were also recognized, including Carli Lloyd, who earned the Golden Ball Trophy as MVP in the World Cup.
Fans hope the World Cup win builds more momentum for women’s soccer across the country, and secures Kansas City’s reputation as a hardcore soccer town.
“It’s a packed house,” said Derrick White, who brought his daughters to Monday’s game. “So it shows it’s really catching on in Kansas City and with the four World Cup players here, plus the others that are coming in from the other teams, it’s showing really good for KC and the area.”
Kat Lowe, a member of the Blue Crew fan section, agreed.
“Knowing the players that are playing in it and watching them for the last three years and knowing that they represent KC has been huge,” she said. “Not only are they representing the U.S. on the biggest stage, but they’re from here, they’re our team, so that’s pretty exciting.”
FCKC tied the Houston Dash 1-1.