1. The Set Piece
The impressive shot could never have happened without first receiving the beautiful set-piece from URFC FW Diana Matheson. If you watch her approach to the free kick, you’ll notice Matheson attempts to drive the ball into the box, but away from the Courage keeper. Looking to find the head of a powerful Elise Thorsnes, Matheson takes as much spin off the ball as possible, allowing for it to drop inside the area.
2. True Grit
Ratcliffe’s shooting window came as a result of her immense work ethic and fight in the final minutes of the match. Her daring slide tackle against Courage DF Jaelene Hinkle won her the ball just on top of the box – demonstrating her defensive skill and admirable fight. Although Ratcliffe did not start the match, her preparation and readiness as a substitute made all the difference for URFC.
3. Golazo Lindo
Ratcliffe’s goal is one of those highlights that seems to get better and better the more times you watch it. If you slow down the shot, you find that she uses her left leg to get up off the ground, and then immediately swings with the right – she shoots as she’s getting up. It is incredible how much power Ratcliffe was able to generate while still moving towards standing upright. The beautiful shot sailed into the upper 90, making it impossible for any goalkeeper to get a hand on it.
You can vote for Brittany Ratcliffe in the “Goal of the Week” contest on twitter, by using the hashtag #RatcliffeGOW, or voting on the NWSL’s twitter poll at @NWSL. Spread the word to your friends and retweet the action at @UtahRoyalsFC on twitter.