RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — The North Carolina Courage’s Thursday practice is a bit more intense than normal. The Courage is coming off a disappointing loss to Portland and attention to detail is at a high level.
“Very healthy, it’s very good, no one is complacent,” said NC Courage right back Ryan Williams.
Portland is a tough environment to play in and their raucous crowd may have played a part in the Courage’s uncharacteristic play. On Sunday, the Courage turned the ball over more than 100 times.
“We just went erratic for some reason and that happens,” said NC Courage head coach Sean Nahas. “It’s one game out of twenty-plus that we’ve done that.”
Still, the players are disappointed with what took place and until the next game comes along, practice is the perfect place to exercise some demons.
“For me, whenever I don’t play well or a game doesn’t go right, I just want to practice and get it out of my system and practice again,” said Williams.
But after practice comes film study which at times, like after the Portland game, can be a bit brutal.
“We’ve praised them so much this year, we’re really proud of the group I trust the group whole-heartedly but when they don’t play well they have to see it,” said Nahas. “I can be honest with you, that is probably the hardest we’ve been on them in video.”
Nahas was quick to point out that his squad has overachieved in the eyes of many and now, the Courage has its full complement of players back with the return of the World Cup performers. Depth was built while they were away, now it’s time to move forward.
“The players that got us into the Challenge Cup finals, they’ll be rewarded, they’ve been rewarded but we also have to do what’s right,” said Nahas.