PITTSBURGH (Aug. 22, 2021) – Atlanta United 2 lost 4-1 against Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC Sunday night at Highmark Stadium. Darwin Matheus scored for the fourth time in six games, while Aiden McFadden registered his second assist of the season.
The first half of the match saw plenty of action from both clubs. In just the second minute, the referee called a penalty kick against ATL UTD 2. Russell Cicerone stepped up to take the penalty and placed it to the bottom left corner, but Rocco Ríos Novo made a strong save to deny the forward. However, Cicerone went on to score in the fourth minute from a through ball.
Atlanta had a chance to even the score in the sixth minute when Matheus saw goalkeeper Daniel Vitiello off his line, so the Venezuelan forward tried to whip in a left-footed corner kick into goal. The shot appeared to possibly cross the line as the keeper dove back into goal and parried the ball away, but it was deemed not a goal.
Matheus found the back of the net in the 15th minute, which began from building out of Atlanta’s defensive third. Once Atlanta worked up to the attacking third, Robbie Mertz pulled the ball back and found McFadden, who served in a cross that bounced to Matheus. The forward took a touch and as he was falling, he hammered a side volley into the back of the net.
Pittsburgh took a 2-1 lead in the 26th minute. Kenardo Forbes received a ball near the end line and served in a low-driven ball to Thomas Williamson, who finished the one-time shot at the near post. Then, Riverhounds SC added its third goal in the 31st minute, when Cicerone netted his second of the night. The forward received a ball over the backline inside the box, where he made a few cutbacks and then buried a shot.
Cicerone secured his hat-trick in the 66th minute. Alexander Dixon drove to the end line and played a ball to the near post, where the forward redirected the ball towards the back side of the goal.
ATL UTD 2 (6-8-7, 25 points) will return to action against FC Tulsa on August 28 at ONEOK Field (ESPN+, 8:00 p.m. ET).
Atlanta 1, Pittsburgh 4
Shots: 13-12 Atlanta
Shots on Target: 5-2 Pittsburgh
Corner kicks: 5-4 Pittsburgh
Fouls committed:13-11 Pittsburgh
Offside: 6-1 Pittsburgh
Possession: 62-38 Atlanta
Passing Accuracy: 81-67 Atlanta
PIT – Russell Cicerone (Hugh Alexander Dixon) 4’
ATL – Darwin Matheus (Aiden McFadden) 15’
PIT – Thomas Williamson (Kenardo Forbes) 26’
PIT – Russell Cicerone (Daniel Griffin) 31’
PIT – Russell Cicerone (Hugh Alexander Dixon) 66’
PIT – Louis Pérez (yellow) 54’
ATL – Phillip Goodrum (yellow) 71’
ATL – Josh Bauer (yellow) 76’
PIT – Daniel Rovira (yellow) 84’
ATL – Matías Benítez (yellow) 88’
PIT – Todd Wharton (yellow) 90+2’
ATL UTD 2 STARTING LINEUP
Rocco Ríos Novo; Aiden McFadden, Bryce Washington (Bradley Kamdem Fewo – 45’), Josh Bauer, Caleb Wiley; Ajani Fortune (Phillip Goodrum – 45’), Robbie Mertz ©, Abdoulaye Diop (Matías Benítez – 72’); Machop Chol (Amadou Macky Diop – 68’), Jackson Conway (Connor Stanley – 79’), Darwin Matheus
Substitutes not used: Vincente Reyes, David Mejia
PIT HOUNDS STARTING LINEUP
Daniel Vitiello; Mekeil Williams, Shane Wiedt, Preston Kilwien; Todd Wharton, Hugh Alexander Dixon (Anthony Velarde – 72’), Daniel Griffin, Thomas Williamson (Thomas Judge – 59’); Kenardo Forbes © (Jelani Peters – 83’); Russell Cicerone (Wyatt Borso – 89’); Louis Pérez (Daniel Rovira – 59’)
Substitutes not used: Jake Leeker, Ezra Armstrong
Luis Guardia, (referee), Tom Felice, (assistant), Ross Kleinstuber, (assistant), Austin Saini, (fourth official)
- Darwin Matheus netted his fifth goal of the season, which is his fourth goal in the last six games.
- Aiden McFadden recorded his second assist of the season.
- Rocco Ríos Novo made his second save on a penalty kick with ATL UTD 2 this season.
- Jackson Conway made his first appearance with ATL UTD 2 since the first match of the season against Louisville City FC.
ABOUT ATL UTD 2
ATL UTD 2 is owned and operated by AMB Sports & Entertainment and is the United Soccer League (USL) affiliate of Major League Soccer’s Atlanta United. ATL UTD 2 joined USL for its expansion 2018 season and plays its home matches at Fifth Third Bank Stadium in Kennesaw, Georgia.