On Mother’s Day, Atlanta United hosted Orlando City as the 5 stripes were looking to continue their win streak. Orlando did give Atlanta a good scare in the opening seconds of the game as Dom Dwyer had a good look at scoring the opening the goal for the Lions, but missed wide of the goal. In the 14th minute, Atlanta got an opportunity to strike first and they didn’t missed it. Pity Martinez would get his first goal as a member of the 5 stripes. Tito Villalba would get credit for the assist on the goal and would go on to have a terrific game as he just gave Orlando huge problems as virtually none of Orlando defenders could defend him well.
In the second half, Atlanta did have plenty of opportunities to go up by another goal or two and the best chance came from Julian Gressel in the 56th minute. A beautiful place ball by Villalba set up Gressel to put in the back of the net and he did. However, the official did go to VAR and determine that the goal was no good as Villalba was ruled offside. It was a controversial call as it didn’t look that Villalba was offside and that the only way that he was offside would be by his arm. The evidence had to been clear and convincing, apparently to VAR it was.
As for Orlando City, they had plenty of chances to get the equalizer, but they just couldn’t finish the opportunities that they had and Brad Guzan had three terrific saves to keep Orlando off the board. Atlanta would go on and win 1-0. It is the fourth straight win for Atlanta and with the shutout of Orlando, it ties the MLS record for consecutive shutouts which is four. One thing that Atlanta could improve before they face Vancouver is to do rotations better. At times against Orlando some of the guys just seemed tired and out of gas. If the rotations can be better, then everything else is working fine for Atlanta. Frank de Boer has gotten this team on the right track and our climbing back up in the Eastern Conference standings.
Up next for Atlanta United is a trip to Vancouver to face the Whitecaps. Game time is set for 10:00 PM and will be on Fox Sports South. Follow @SSSATLUTD throughout the game and for everything Atlanta United.
By: Stewart Zwald @SDZwald0415