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Why Utah, starting late June, was the NWSL’s choice for the 2020 Challenge Cup

Photo Copyright Daniela Porcelli for The Equalizer

The plan is officially out in the world. The National Women’s Soccer League will play a tournament in Utah from June 27-July 26 in what might be the only on-field action of the year for the league and what will likely make it the first team sport in the U.S. to return to play from the stoppage caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

No fans. Games broadcast via CBS Sports domestically and Twitch internationally. P&G and Secret as presenting sponsors. Regular, thorough testing for COVID-19. The how and what of it all is detailed here.

Equally interesting are the answers to the why. Why so soon, beginning in June? Why Utah? And, in the spirit of whether the overall idea is a good one, why try to have a 2020 competition, period? A confluence of factors led to the ultimate decision to move forward with the 2020 NWSL Challenge Cup in that specific window and location.

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