Wednesday, May 24, 2017

MLS Review: Destructive Atlanta crush Fire, Minnesota claim first point

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 19 Mar 2017

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Atlanta United extinguished Chicago Fire in a 4-0 demolition, while Minnesota United earned their first MLS point.

Venezuelan star Josef Martinez was at the double as expansion franchise Atlanta produced a ruthless display to make it back-to-back wins against 10-man Chicago on Saturday.

Atlanta embarrassed Minnesota 6-1 last week and Gerardo Martino’s men were at it again in front of a sell-out crowd, with an own goal and Hector Villalba inspiring the hosts.

Brandon Vincent turned the ball into his own net in the fourth minute as Atlanta’s high octane style of player forced an error and it got better for the home side seven minutes later when Johan Kappelhof  saw red for bringing down Martinez.

Atlanta made their numerical advantage count in the second half as Martinez – the hat-trick hero from last week – sprung the offside trap and rounded goalkeeper Jorge Bava on the hour-mark.

Villalba made it 3-0 in the 67th minute before Martinez completed his brace eight minutes from time as Atlanta took their season tally to 11 goals to become just the second MLS team to manage that total in three matches.

Minnesota had something to celebrate after claiming their first point as an MLS team in a 2-2 draw against Colorado Rapids.

The visitors came from behind and took the lead before the hour-mark thanks to Kevin Molino and Christina Ramirez but Colorado were not to be denied by Minnesota, who had Justin Davis sent off in the 70th minute, as Marlon Hairston ensured a share of the spoils for the Rapids.

After consecutive losses to open the season, LA Galaxy overcame Real Salt Lake 2-1 and Maximiliano Urutti’s brace saw FC Dallas defeated New England Revolution by the same scoreline.

Cyle Larin scored twice in Orlando City’s 2-1 win at home to Philadelphia Union, Sporting Kansas City were 2-1 victors against San Jose Earthquakes, New York City were held to a 1-1 draw by Montreal Impact, Toronto FC accounted for Vancouver Whitecaps 2-0, DC United lost 2-0 to Columbus Crew, while Portland Timbers preserved their 100 per cent record with a 4-2 win against Houston Dynamo.

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