Let’s flashback on Wednesday, July 17th when Atlanta United hosted the Houston Dynamo in a white out game at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. The match started off with a bang as Dynamo player Alberth Elis got sent off in the 6th minute for brushing off the referee after he frustratingly got called for a foul on LGP and kicked the ball out of bounds near the sideline ref prompting the referee to give Elis a yellow and when he took it too far and bumped into the official, he was done for the night. From there it was all United as the blowout would begin with Darlington Nagbe getting his first goal since arriving with the team last season in the 27th minute and then not even two minutes later Brandon Vazquez doubled the score off a header from a deflected cross into the open goal to make it 2-0. In the second half Josef Martinez would score off a floated cross into the box and beating the goalkeeper as his header made it 3-0. Josef would then double his tally in the 79th minute as he embarrassed the goalkeeper and one defender by dribbling around and making the two Dynamo players collide with each other, Josef smashed the 4th goal of the match into the roof of the net and made it 4-0 as the rout did not end there. The final and fifth goal would come in the 88th minute as Julian Gressel scored to end off the night on a high note and the final score being 5-0. Up next, D.C.
The match vs. D.C. United was a very important test for United as to if Wednesday’s blowout win vs. Houston was for real or was just a fluke. The first half of the match finished scoreless as more of the anticipation and excitement would come in the second half. In the 71st minute United were awarded a penalty kick for a foul on Josef Martinez inside the penalty box. Unfortunately, Martinez did everything right except for the finish as he tricked the goalkeeper and went on the opposite side, but his shot went over the bar keeping the score at 0-0. In the 89th minute the substitute Pity Martinez would give United the lead off a header, making this his third goal of the season and what an important one it was and much needed, but the goal scoring would not end just yet. Josef Martinez wanted to redeem on his penalty miss and make it a distant memory as if it never happened, well he did just that in the 92nd minute during stoppage time as he doubled the score to make it 2-0 and seal off the game giving Atlanta a must win as the next stretch of difficult matches coming up against LAFC and LA Galaxy, just to name a few. This is a good bounce back for United after their past three games were filled with many errors and frustration of losing and not closing out the game, but this is just the beginning for a tough schedule coming up for the rest of July and the majority of August. VAMOS UNITED!
Atlanta United’s next match will be on Friday, July 26th as they take on league leaders LAFC in LA. Kickoff is at 10 P.M. and will be televised live on ESPN and ESPN Deportes.
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