Match Recap Atlanta United vs. Toronto FC Wednesday, August 18, 2021

ATLANTA – Atlanta United won 1-0 vs. Toronto FC Wednesday night at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Ezequiel Barco scored the game-winner while recently signed Designated Player Luiz Araújo made his Atlanta United debut. Atlanta collected its third consecutive win and extended its unbeaten streak to four matches.

The club’s new Brazilian forward wasted no time integrating himself into the team’s attack, putting his first shot on frame with a blast from outside the box that forced a save from goalkeeper Quentin Westberg in the eighth minute. Three minutes later, Marcelino Moreno took a shot from outside the box that was hit true, but it ascended just over the crossbar.

Toronto eventually conceded as Atlanta took the lead in the 20th minute through Barco. Brooks Lennon sent a long ball down the right side where the Argentine forward gathered it inside the 18-yard-box. He retreated to the right edge of the box before turning towards goal and facing Eriq Zavaleta one-on-one. Barco took a few small touches while shying to his left before unleashing a left-footed shot that took a slight deflection off Zavaleta’s boot before falling into the top left corner of the net, leaving Westberg flat-footed.

Atlanta continued to press forward and look for goals but in the 53rd minute, Toronto subbed on a trio of usual starters in Alejandro Pozuelo, Yeferson Soteldo and Kemar Lawrence to try and find an equalizer. Pozuelo nearly leveled the match in the 71st minute when a ball was lofted across the box where he was unmarked at the back post. Pozuelo one-timed a bouncing shot on goal, but Brad Guzan was well-positioned to parry it away from danger.

Atlanta had a pair of late opportunities to extend its lead. In the 83rd, Moreno took a low shot across goal and missed just wide of the left post. Four minutes later, Barco chipped a ball over Toronto’s backline for Josef Martínez where the Venezuelan one-timed a shot right at Westberg. The rebound fell to Erik López, who put the ball in the back of the net, but Martínez was called offside on the initial ball.

Atlanta (5-6-9, 24 points) returns to action Saturday when it travels to face D.C. United at Audi Field (8:00 p.m., Bally Sports South, Star 94.1, La Mejor).

MATCH INFO 

Atlanta United 1, Toronto FC 0

Mercedes-Benz Stadium

Atlanta, Georgia

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Stats
Atlanta
Toronto
Shots
21
14
Shots on Target
4
3
Corner Kicks
4
4
Fouls Committed
5
10
Offside
1
5
Possession
57%
43%
Passing Accuracy
88%
85%

SCORING SUMMARY

ATL – Ezequiel Barco (Brooks Lennon) 20’

DISCIPLINARY SUMMARY

None

ATLANTA UNITED STARTING LINEUP

Brad Guzan ©; Brooks Lennon, Miles Robinson, Anton Walkes, Alan Franco, George Bello; Santiago Sosa (Amar Sejdić – 59’), Marcelino Moreno (George Campbell – 91’); Ezequiel Barco, Luiz Araújo (Erik López – 67’), Josef Martínez (Erick Torres – 91’).

Substitutes not used: Alec Kann, Ronald Hernandez, Jurgen Damm, Mikey Ambrose, Jackson Conway. 

TORONTO FC STARTING LINEUP

Quentin Westberg; Auro, Richie Laryea, Omar González, Justin Morrow, Eriq Zavaleta (Kemar Lawrence – 53’); Noble Okello (Marco Delgado – 77’), Jonathan Osorio (Alejandro Pozuelo – 53’), Michael Bradley ©; Jacob Shaffelburg (Yeferson Soteldo – 53’), Patrick Mullins (Ifunanyachi Achara – 70’).

Substitutes not used: Alex Bono, Jordan Perruzza, Luke Singh, Nick DeLeon.

OFFICIALS

Alan Kelly (referee), Nick Uranga (assistant), Kathryn Nesbitt (assistant), Elvis Osmanovic (fourth), Edvin Jurisevic (VAR), Joshua Patlak (AVAR).

ATTENDANCE

42,502

TEAM NOTES

  • Luiz Araújo made his debut for Atlanta United
  • Ezequiel Barco scored his fourth goal of the season
  • Brooks Lennon recorded his fourth assist of the season which leads the team
  • Atlanta took its second-most shots this season with 21 (July 21 at FC Cincinnati – 22 shots)

ABOUT ATLANTA UNITED

Atlanta United joined Major League Soccer in 2017 and won the 2018 MLS Cup in just its second season, the earliest an expansion team has won the title since 1998. The club has set multiple league records including season tickets sales (36,000-plus), single-game attendance (72,548), single-season average (53,002) and total home attendance (901,033). Owned by Arthur M. Blank, and led by club President Darren Eales, Atlanta United plays its home matches at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. For more information about Atlanta United, including how to purchase season tickets, visit: www.atlutd.com, and follow @ATLUTD.

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