Sophia Smith injury: USWNT and Portland Thorns star 'week-to-week' with mild MCL sprain


United States ladies’s nationwide group and Portland Thorns FC forward Sophia Smith’s knee injury is a moderate median security ligament (MCL) sprain in her ideal knee and her status is week-to-week, her club revealed on Wednesday. She got the injury versus the Washington Spirit on Sunday. 

Smith left the field under her own power prior to halftime however was later on seen with her knee covered in ice and on crutches throughout the rest of the match. Forward Hannah Belfort subbed on for the hurt Smith and Portland won a 1-1 draw versus the Spirit. They are still in top place on the league table as the playoff hunt remains in full speed. 

The 2022 NWSL MVP tried a difficulty on the ball and her knee gotten in touch with the lawn on heavy effect. The week 17 component was her very first start back from the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup. She scored the game-winner as a replacement versus North Carolina Courage on Aug. 20 and the group lept back into top place with the triumph. 

The objective was Smith’s 11th of the 2023 season and has her strongly in the lead of the Golden Boot race. Spirit striker Ashley Hatch remains in 2nd with 9 objectives and North Carolina Courage forward Kerolin remains in 3rd with 8 objectives.

How this effects Portland

Portland has the inmost bench in the league and is developed to sustain unforeseeable injuries. Smith’s assaulting partner Morgan Weaver scored the only objective versus the Spirit, and Belfort has actually become another scoring choice after being with the club given that 2021. Neither of them are Smith obviously, her 0.56 anticipated objectives per 90 minutes is 2nd just to the Spirit’s Ashley Hatch in the NWSL this season (amongst gamers with over 500 minutes). Sill Weaver remains in the leading 10 at 0.35, ninth in general, and Belfort is likewise at 0.35, albeit in just 182 minutes played.

There are simply 5 weeks staying in the routine season and the 2023 NWSL Shield and playoff positioning is still on the line. The group remains in a great position to protect the leading area however any prolonged loss of the ruling MVP and leading objective scorer in the league is an enormous blow no matter how deep the bench. 

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