SANTA MONICA — Fifteen games later and Sky Blue remains winless on the season in its worse performance ever in the NWSL. Since the National Women’s Soccer League started, the New Jersey team has sat in the top half of the standings and only sitting in the bottom half of the bracket two times previously.
The team hasn’t lacked the skills to win this season by any means. With Carli Lloyd at the helm, Shea Groom, Imani Dorsey and Katie Johnson offer a strong, experienced from line that are in no short supply of shots on goal. Between the two forwards and two midfielders, Sky Blue FC recorded 46 shots on goal with a number of more from the variety of other players on the roster. Yet the New Jersey team has only be able to clinch 11 goals over its last 18 days.
It’s clear that Sky Blue will not be finding its way into the playoffs this season, but fans might just be happy with a single win over the final nine games of the season. What’s unclear is why the team that’s always been in the middle of the pack dropped to the bottom without a win on the season?
Recent news released suggest that Gov. Phil Murphy, owner of Sky Blue FC, faces allegations of mismanaging the professional women’s soccer team. According to NewJersey.com, Murphy is under scrutiny for providing poor living conditions and inadequate facilities for the players. While reports call buying the team, “a poor financial investment” on Murphy’s part, but is the reason for the team’s poo performance this season at fault of Murphy for providing ineffective facilities for the team?
The lack of a crowd is the least of Sky Blue’s problems. The team shows up daily to a training facilities with no place to put their gear or get ready as there is no locker room at the training center. It gets worse though. According to The Equalizer, the facility doesn’t even have running water, forcing players to use portable bathrooms and wear dirty gear due to not having the right facilities. There aren’t even proper facilities to treat players as two-time World Player of the Year Carly Lloyd takes an ice bath in an overside trash can.
While teams with proper facilities have closed their doors due to lack of investors, New Jersey is fighting to provide the proper place for its team to train and live. According to NewJersey.com, management is working toward addressing its players concern and improve the training facilities accordingly.