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Hany Mukhtar stars in big Nashville win, William Agada nets a brace for Sporting KC

SoccerNews in MLS 22 Aug 2022

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A first-half brace from Nashville striker Hany Mukhtar propelled his side to a 4-0 home win against FC Dallas in a Western Conference showdown on Sunday.

Less than five minutes into the action, Mukhtar received a pass on the right-hand side of the penalty box and seemingly dribbled himself into too tight of an angle to shoot – but he did just that, rocketing one into the roof of the net to make it 1-0.

Mukhtar then turned distributor for Nashville’s second goal, playing with his back to the goal and laying one off for debutant Jacob Shaffelburg in the 22nd minute to make a productive start with his new side after arriving from Montreal.

The incredible first half for Mukhtar was capped off with a picture-perfect free kick from the top of the box, expertly curling his shot over the wall into the top-right corner to make it 3-0.

Centre-back David Romney completed the rout with a header from a corner in the 72nd minute, handing the Western Conference’s third-placed team a resounding defeat, with no shots on target. With the win, Nashville moved up to sixth.

Earlier in the day, New York City were efficient in front of goal in their 2-0 away win against the Chicago Fire, netting an early goal in each half to take the Soldier Field crowd out of the contest.

Chicago finished with more possession (58 per cent) more shots (10 to eight) and more expected goals (1.09 to 0.82), but none of their 10 shots forced a save from Sean Johnson in the New York goals.

Gabriel Pereira broke the deadlock in the 16th minute after getting on the end of a move authored by Santiago Rodriguez, and Rodriguez was the beneficiary of Pereira’s strong pressing work to begin the second half, scooping up a loose ball deep in Chicago’s defense and slotting it.

Two goals from William Agada led the way in Sporting Kansas City’s 4-1 home win against the Portland Timbers, with two assists from 36-year-old American Graham Zusi coming in the first half.

The Western Conference’s bottom team, Kansas City still have the worst goal-difference with 30 scored and 49 against.

In Charlotte, an 89th-minute winner from substitute Tesho Akindele lifted Orlando City to a 2-1 away win. Charlotte could have jumped into the Eastern Conference playoff picture with a victory, but still sit three points behind the Columbus Crew.

Columbus could have added to that buffer when they hosted Atlanta United, but they had to settle for a 2-2 draw against the 13th-placed strugglers.

After a first-half goal from Atlanta’s Santiago Sosa, a quick-fire Cucho double saw Columbus equalise in the 66th minute and take the lead in the 72nd, before Juan Jose Purata finished the scoring for the visitors five minutes later.

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