ATLANTA (June 27, 2023) – Atlanta United 2 midfielder Nick Firmino was voted the MLS NEXT Pro Player of Matchday 14 of the 2023 season. Just days removed from scoring a game-tying goal in his MLS debut, Firmino netted a brace in Atlanta’s 4-2 comeback victory over New York City FC II on Sunday, June 25, making him the league leader in goals scored with 10.
After Atlanta erased a two-goal deficit in the second half, the Brazilian midfielder scored two goals to complete Atlanta’s comeback and earn the team’s first win over NYCFC II. His ninth goal of the year came in the 74th minute when Jonantan Villal fired a shot that deflected off a defender and fell to Firmino at the top of the penalty arc. Firmino settled the ball with two touches before curling the ball into the bottom right corner passed the outstretched arms of New York’s keeper to give Atlanta its first lead of the evening.
In the 84th minute, Firmino netted his second goal of the night to give Atlanta the 4-2 lead. The play began after an Atlanta corner was cleared out to Villal still deep inside New York’s half. Villal quickly turned to find Firmino at the top left edge of the box. Firmino took a few dribbles to beat a defender inside the 18-yard-box before curling a shot under the keeper and into the bottom right corner, giving Firmino his league-leading 10th goal.
ATL UTD 2 (6-5-5, 24 points) will return to action against Crown Legacy FC, July 9 at Mecklenburg County Sportsplex at Matthews. (Apple TV – MLS Season Pass)