Atlanta United 3, DC United 1 | 2018 MLS Match Recap
Atlanta United ended D.C. United's strange hoodoo over them in emphatic style on Sunday, defeating the Black-and-Red 3-1 in front of an MLS single-game-record crowd of 72,035 at Mercedes-Benz Stadium via goals from their attacking stars Josef Martinez, Miguel Almiron and Hector Villalba.
Though Atlanta dominated possession and created far more scoring chances, D.C. hung in contention doggedly for most of the match before the Five Stripes ended their resistance with two goals in three second-half minutes. The win marks ATLUTD's first positive result against D.C. in four all-time meetings, with the capital club having swept the expansion side in their three matches last season.
Darren Mattocks netted a late consolation to deny Atlanta a clean sheet. But the home side's faithful legions got the victory, and the attacking fireworks, they sought.
- 24' – ATL – Josef Martinez | Watch
- 73' – ATL – Miguel Almiron | Watch
- 75' – ATL – Hector Villalba | Watch
- 86' – DC – Darren Mattocks | Watch
- THE BIG PICTURE: Last week's 4-0 thumping in Houston had many fretting about Atlanta's engine room, but they were dominant here until the final minutes, bossing D.C. in a new 3-5-2 formation anchored by Jeff Larentowicz's return to holding midfielder that set the stage for the big names up front to light up the scoreboard.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: Almiron struggled to seize the game in the opening stages, but when he received a Julian Gressel pass and calmly fired his strike into the top left corner to run ATL's lead to 2-0, there would be no way back for the visitors.
- MAN OF THE MATCH: With a golazo and an assist, Almiron eventually got back to his rampaging best.