Atlanta United falls to FC Cincinnati 2-1

match 4-20

Following a 2-2 draw against the Philadelphia Union, Atlanta United looked to right the ship at home. Going against another strong Eastern Conference squad in FC Cincinnati, the 5-Stripes had a challenge ahead of them. But Atlanta conceded two goals, just like in the match against Philadelphia, to fall 2-1.

"We were winning, and it was so difficult to get that goal," said head coach Gonzalo Pineda at the post match media. "Right after that, it was a lack of understanding on how to solidify the result."

Atlanta weathered an early offensive press from FC Cincinnati as they maintained possession for the start of the match. The first good chance for Atlanta came off a corner kick as Tristan Muyumba shot the ball just wide of the net. In the 14th minute of the first half, Saba Lobjanidze almost broke open the game, but a quick, close save from Cincinnati keeper, and former Atlanta United member, Alec Kann stopped that chance. Lobjanidze was all over the pitch in the first half; his speed working well against the congested style of play that Cincinnati likes to play.

As time ticked on in the first half, the matched turned to a game of transitions as each team was able to move the ball down the field for scoring chances.

In the 39th minute, after Nick Hagglung fouled Daniel Rios, Kann stopped a point blank shot from Almada. Former Atlanta United member, Miles Robinson, made a sliding block against Rios. Both Robinson and Nick Hagglund were down after the play. Ian Murphy came in for Hagglund in the 43rd minute, while Robinson was able to resume play. Atlanta United ended the first half with 56 percent possession and six shots on goal.


After halftime, Ronald Hernandez had to slot in place of homegrown Noah Cobb. With nine of their last 12 goals coming in the second half, it came as no surprise when the 5-Stripes got on the scoreboard in the 59th minute of the match. A beautiful goal from Thiago Almada, assisted by Edwin Mosquera, gave Atlanta the lead. In the next minute, Giorgos Giakoumakis, Xande Silva, and Jay Fortune came in for Daniel Rios, Edwin Mosquera, and Tristan Muyumba respectively. Both Giakouakis and Silva missed the last match due to injury.

Atlanta United’s lead did not last long - Cincinnati scored in the 62nd minute with a goal from Luca Orellano. Quickly after the equalizing goal, Luciano Acosta doubled Cincinnati's lead after a forced interception on a short corner in the 64th minute. For the second week in a row, Atlanta had to try and gain their footing after conceding two goals.

"It was one play that we practiced," said Pineda when asked about the corner kick that led to a Cincinatti goal. "We just made three subs, so it probably was not the best moment. It was play we trained in the week, but bad execution in the pass back to Brooks [Lennon]. It was a set play that we tried. Those are the maturity moments we need to get better at. We just scored a goal, made three subs - can we just put the ball inside the box. It is a learning lesson for everyone."

Cincinnati subbed in Aaron Boupendza for Corey Baird in the 76th minute. Atlanta got their seventh corner of the match after a yellow card was given to Robinson for poor sportsmanship.

The last sub in for Atlanta was used as Tyler Wolff came in for Lobjanidze in the 87th minute of the match. Cincinnati subbed out DeAndre Yedlin, Pavel Bucha, and Luciano Orellano for Bret Halsey, Malik Pento, and Alvas Powell. In the dying minutes of seven minuted of stoppage time, Atlanta tried to end the game in a draw. Brooks Lennon and Caleb Wiley both had good chances but in end, the 5-Stripes were not able to overcome two quick goals by FC Cincinnati.

"We have to forget this night," said Lobjanidze after the match. "We need to focus on Chicago. We played so well against Chicago at home; we have to play that same game, and more. We have to get the three points - 100 percent."

Match Stats
Atlanta United
FC Cincinnati
Shots on target
Corner kicks
Fouls committed 
Passing Accuracy

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