3 Things we learned from Gotham FC's 1-0 win over the Courage

  • Gotham FC got their second win of the season
  • They split the series with the North Carolina Courage after their March loss in Cary
  • Here are three things we learned from the win
Gotham FC
Gotham FC / Elsa/GettyImages

In the first game of a three-game in eight-day stretch, NJ/NY Gotham FC earned a 1-0 win at home against the North Carolina Courage. This was Gotham's first win since their opening weekend victory away to Portland Thorns FC, while this marks North Carolina's third loss in their last four games after winning three of their first four games of the season.

The game's only goal came in the eleventh minute. Lynn Williams fired home her first goal of the season in the top right-hand corner of the goal after pouncing on a loose ball in the Courage box.
The visitors were not void of chances of their own. Their most dangerous one came in the form of an Ashley Sanchez strike smacking the right post in the 67th minute.

Some other notes on Gotham from this game include Ella Stevens making her first start in her Gotham FC career. Emily Sonnett started her second game in a row at center-back with both Tierna Davidson and Maitane López still sidelined due to injury and illness. Ann-Katrin Berger made her second start and made five saves en route to her first clean sheet with Gotham FC.

This was a much-needed win. Here are three things we learned from the 1-0 win over the North Carolina Courage.

3 Things we learned from Gotham's win over the Courage

1. Lynn Williams looks back to her best

After starting the year with an injury, Lynn Williams not only played her first full 90 minutes on Saturday night, but looked a lot like the player that earned Best XI honors in 2023. The forward was frequently Gotham FC's most dangerous offensive threat with the most total shots at 6, and the most duels won on the night with 13.

Having Williams back to her best is crucial for the NJ/NY team if they want to start scoring more goals consistently this season. She is one of the fastest and hardest working players in the league and frequently sets the tone for this Gotham side from game to game. Having her back to full fitness not only means fans get the best version of Williams, but it also should see everyone else's level rise.

2. Strong offensive play carried over from Louisville match

Despite only scoring one goal deep into stoppage time last week against Racing Louisville FC, that was by far Gotham's best offensive performance of the season. Supporters could see a lot of it carry over to this week.

While it wasn't quite as dominant as last week, a lot of that can probably be put down to North Carolina's superior player quality to Louisville. Many of the tendencies and patterns of play were very similar to last week.

While it is yet to result in a huge outburst of goals, it creates a positive outlook on future games after the anemic-looking attack from the first few matches of the season.

3. Great start to tough, busy stretch of the season

Gotham FC took full advantage of a full week of rest while North Carolina had to play on Wednesday. That will change this week as Saturday's win was the first game of three over eight days. On Wednesday they play in Houston and while the Houston Dash has not had a good start to the season, playing on short rest with travel is never easy regardless of the opponent.

This is followed by a trip to San Diego in a Challenge Cup rematch against the San Diego Wave on Sunday. And while the California team will also be playing Wednesday, they will have the advantage in that they do not have to travel, as will Houston who play Sunday and Wednesday at home.

This stretch is then followed by back-to-back cross-country flights to and from California. After their matchup with the Wave, Gotham FC will fly back to New Jersey for a home matchup with the Chicago Red Stars. A return flight to California follows this but this time they head up north for a Friday night matchup against Bay FC. They will finally get a little bit of a breather with an international break following this game.

This stretch will illuminate quite a bit about the team. It will highlight how good the depth truly is, what different personnel groupings look like together, and how the players will deal with so much travel in such a short period. While it's still early in the season, earning points and climbing back up the standings is still crucial to make life easier for Gotham FC later this season.