Atlanta United drew 2-2 vs. Nashville SC Saturday at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in front of 40,748 fans. Marcelino Moreno and Erik López each scored to put Atlanta ahead 2-0, but a pair of second-half goals from Hany Mukhtar forced both sides to split the points.
Atlanta jumped on the board early when Moreno scored the club’s quickest goal this season in the sixth minute. Miles Robinson received a pass from Brad Guzan just outside of Atlanta’s own box and dribbled into space on the right side. Robinson spotted the run of Moreno through the middle of Nashville’s defense and played a long ball into the 18-yard box. Moreno brought the ball down and took a touch around Dave Romney before placing a low shot between the defender’s legs and past Joe Willis for the 1-0 lead. It was Moreno’s team-leading third goal of the season and Robinson’s first career MLS assist.
Robinson nearly had his second assist of the night in the 14th minute when he played an identical ball over the top to Jake Mulraney. The winger brought it down and got off a shot on the edge of the six-yard box, but it was deflected and collected by Willis. Atlanta produced another golden opportunity four minutes later after Emerson Hyndman turned Nashville over in the midfield and quickly played it to Josef Martínez. The Venezuelan forward ran directly at goal, dribbling into the box before having it poked away by Romney. The ball fell nicely for López who one-timed a shot from outside the box, but Willis made a diving save.
Atlanta doubled its lead when it again scored six minutes into the half. Anton Walkes made a tackle in the defensive half where Moreno gathered the loose ball and dribbled nearly the length of the field before laying it off to George Bello down the left side. The Homegrown sent a cross to the front post where López made a diagonal run, jumped in front of an onrushing Willis and, with his back to goal, coolly backheeled the ball into the net with his right boot.
Nashville pulled one goal back in the 80th minute. Daniel Lovitz and Matt LaGrassa combined for a give-and-go down the left side before finding Mukhtar in the middle of the box where he finished to the bottom right corner. Mukhtar scored three minutes later after a deflected shot fell kindly to him on the edge of the six-yard box where he slotted it in and leveled the match.
Atlanta (2-1-4, 10 points) returns to action Sunday, June 20 against Philadelphia Union at Mercedes-Benz Stadium (2:00 p.m. ET, ESPN, Sports Radio 92-9 The Game, La Mejor).
Atlanta United 2, Nashville SC 2
Shots: 14-12 Nashville
Shots on Target: 5-5
Corner kicks: 5-1 Atlanta
Fouls committed: 12-11 Atlanta
Offside: 1-0 Nashville
Possession: 62-38 Atlanta
Passing Accuracy: 89-78 Atlanta
ATL – Marcelino Moreno (Miles Robinson) 6’ [HIGHLIGHT]
ATL – Erik López (George Bello, Marcelino Moreno) 51’ [HIGHLIGHT]
NSH – Hany Mukhtar (Daniel Lovitz, Matt LaGrassa) 80’ [HIGHLIGHT]
NSH – Hany Mukhtar (Dominique Badji) 83’ [HIGHLIGHT]
ATL – Marcelino Moreno (yellow) 41’
NSH – Dax McCarty (yellow) 57’
NSH – Daniel Lovitz (yellow) 60’
NSH – Luke Haakenson (yellow) 90+2’
ATLANTA UNITED STARTING LINEUP
Brad Guzan ©; Brooks Lennon, Anton Walkes, Miles Robinson, George Bello; Emerson Hyndman, Santiago Sosa; Marcelino Moreno (Franco Ibarra – 69’), Erik López, Jake Mulraney (Ezequiel Barco – 58’), Josef Martínez.
Substitutes not used: Ben Lundgaard, Ronald Hernández, Alan Franco, Matheus Rossetto, Erick Torres, Mikey Ambrose, Jackson Conway.
NASHVILLE SC STARTING LINEUP
Joe Willis; Daniel Lovitz, Dave Romney, Alistair Johnston, Walker Zimmerman; Dax McCarty©, Hany Mukhtar, Alex Muyl (CJ Sapong – 60’), Anibal Godoy (Matt LaGrassa – 77’); Randall Leal (Luke Haakenson – 77’), Jhonder Cadiz (Dominique Badji – 71’).
Substitutes not used: Bryan Meredith, Koze Donasiyano, Dylan Nealis, Taylor Washington, Jalil Anibaba.
Alan Kelly (referee), Adam Wienckowski (assistant), Cameron Blanchard (assistant), Thomas Snyder (fourth), Fotis Bazakos (VAR), Jeff Muschik (AVAR).
- Marcelino Moreno scored his team-leading third goal of the year and recorded his first assist
- Erik López scored his first goal with the club
- George Bello recorded his second career assist
- Ezequiel Barco played 32 minutes as a substitute in his first appearance since sustaining a leg injury against New England Revolution May 1.