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2024 W League Preseason Power Rankings

By Staff, 05/02/24, 2:45PM EDT


Which clubs made it into the top 10?

The start of the USL W League 2024 season is just days away, and the first of many power rankings is here! 

The 2023 W League champions Indy Eleven and runners-up NC Courage U23 come in at 1 and 2 as both clubs are returning with strong rosters vying for a spot back in the championship. Eagle FC, SF Glens and Flint City AFC round out the top 5 following deep playoff runs last season. 

Check out who fills in the rest of the top 10 spots, as well as which new clubs are set to make waves in their inaugural season: 





1 Indy Eleven
First match: @ Racing Louisville FC, 5/14, 6:00 p.m. ET
The 2023 W League Champions showed their dominance throughout last season, going 12-1-1 and only allowing six goals during regular and postseason play. With high confidence and expectations following their title run, they will be the club to beat in 2024.
2 NC Courage U23
First match: vs. South Georgia Tormenta FC, 5/19, 6:00 p.m. ET
NC Courage U23 put up a tough fight in last season’s final to cap off a great campaign, including going undefeated in the regular season. The Courage has various offensive threats, a nearly impenetrable defense and potentially a World Cup winner and Olympic gold medalist in the midfield that will make them a top contender again this season.
3 Eagle FC
First match: vs. Lancaster Inferno FC, 5/19, 7:00 p.m. ET
The Pennsylvania-based club powered to the top of its division and conference last season before falling to the Courage in the semifinal. Eagle FC is likely to make another deep playoff run this season behind returning players Meg Tate and Nia Christopher, who combined for 25 goals and eight assists in 2023.
4 San Francisco Glens SC
First match: @ Academia SC, 5/18, 7:00 p.m. PT
SF Glens put up an impressive 10-1-1 record during its inaugural campaign in 2023, making it to the semifinal against Indy Eleven. The club was spearheaded by W League Player of the Year Nádia Gomes, who recorded 16 goals and eight assists; however, Gomes signed to a professional contract in the NWSL earlier this year, so the Glens will have huge shoes to fill this season.
5 Flint City AFC
First match: vs. Detroit City FC, 5/11, 7:00 p.m. ET
Flint City AFC was the first club in the league to cement a playoff berth, its first in club history, last year after an undefeated 8-0-3 regular season. The Michigan club will be a strong opponent in the Great Lakes Division again this season with the return of UNC commit Bella Gaetino and Michigan forward Sammi Woods, who combined for 14 goals in 2023.
6 Tampa Bay United
First match: vs. Tallahassee Reckoning, 5/18, 6:00 p.m. ET
Tampa Bay went a perfect 12-0-0 during the 2023 regular season and only allowed one goal due in large part to Golden Glove winner Bailey Herfurth. With the addition of three new clubs into the Southeast Division, Tampa Bay will likely have to be just as perfect to come out on top again this year.
7 Minnesota Aurora FC
First match: @ Chicago Dutch Lions FC, 5/23, 7:00 p.m. CT
Joining Tampa as the second of only two clubs with unblemished records, 2023 was another great year for Minnesota Aurora, led by Heartland Division Player of the Year Maya Hansen. The club will be without Defender of the Year Tianna Harris and midfielder Hannah Adler this 2024 season as it looks to make its third consecutive playoffs.
8 FC Olympia
First match: vs. Tacoma Galaxy, 5/18, 7:00 p.m. PT
lthough under a new name, FC Olympia will look to recreate last year's impressive regular season that ended in a Northwest Division title and postseason appearance. Olympia will be without star forward Mariah Lee, who signed a professional contract in Australia, but it will be returning Oregon State’s McKenna Martinez.
9 Oakland Soul
First match: vs. Stockton Cargo SC, 5/5, 6:00 p.m. PT
The Bay Area side battled for a wild-card berth in a tough NorCal Division in its inaugural 2023 season. The club will look to build off last year with returners Sam Tran, a striker out of Stanford, and goalkeeper and UCLA commit Layla Armas.
10 Long Island Rough Riders
First match: vs. Westchester Flames, 5/19, 3:30 p.m. ET
The Rough Riders reached their second consecutive postseason last season after posting a 10-1-1 record through the regular season. The club will be returning multiple key players while making some new additions, including 2022 SEC Freshman of the Year out of Alabama, Gianna Paul.

Newcomers to Watch




Richmond Ivy SC
First match: vs. Virginia Marauders FC, 5/11, 6:00 p.m. ET
Richmond Ivy is coming into the league with loads of potential, stemming from Head Coach Kimmy Cummings, who is bringing years of coaching and playing experience to the club. The Ivy has also announced a roster full of bright stars, including Jamaica national team and Florida State forward Kameron Simmonds.
Lancaster Inferno
First match: @ Eagle FC, 5/19, 7:00 p.m. ET
Lancaster Inferno has found lots of success in former leagues in the past six years, so it will be entering its first W League season with high expectations. The club will be led by University of Pittsburgh goalkeeper Ellie Breech, who is coming off a 2023 NCAA Elite 8 appearance.
AHFC Royals
First match: @ Lonestar SC, 5/18, 7:00 p.m. CT
The new Lone Star Division looks promising, especially after seeing AHFC Royals’ recent player announcements. The Houston-based club will feature college standouts like Leah Klenke from Notre Dame, goalkeeper Maddy Anderson out of Mississippi State and sisters Margo and Macy Matula, both starters for Texas A&M.
Northern Colorado Rain FC
First match: @ CISA, 5/23, 4:30 p.m. MT
In the other new Mountain Division, NoCo Rain will also be bringing some fresh talent to the league. Goalkeeper Haven Empey recently helped the BYU Cougars to a semifinal appearance in the 2023 NCAA Tournament, while Stanford-commit Samantha Smith just earned a bronze medal at the 2023 Pan American Games with the U.S. U-19 national team.
Michiana Lions FC
First match: vs. Kalamazoo FC, 5/16, 7:00 p.m. ET
The Lionesses will be adding even more competition into the Great Lakes Division during its inaugural season. The club has talent from front to back, including Kristina Lynch, 2x national champion from Florida State, and Ruthny Mathurin, who started in all three matches for Haiti in the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup.

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