Atlanta United 2 falls to FC Cincinnati 5-1

Atlanta United 2 lost 5-1 to league-leading FC Cincinnati Wednesday night at Coolray Field. Tyler Ruthven made his club debut while right back Shawn Nicklaw scored his first goal this season.

Cincinnati set the tone with a pair of goals in the first half. Corben Bone took a shot near the penalty spot which deflected off an ATL UTD 2 defender and dropped into the net for a 1-0 lead in the 18th minute. Nazmi Albadawi doubled FCC’s lead in the 25th minute with a right-footed shot that found the bottom left corner.

Atlanta nearly cut the lead in half in the 33rd minute through Devon Sandoval. Nicklaw played Jon Gallagher down the right side where the Irish forward delivered a low cross. Sandoval gathered the pass on the edge of the six-yard box, turned and attempted a shot, but goalkeeper Spencer Richey rushed out for a diving save that skipped safely to a Cincinnati defender.

FCC extended its lead with two more goals early in the second half. In the 53rd minute, Fatai Alashe scored his debut goal for Cincinnati after he put away a rebound following an impressive save from Mitch Hildebrandt. Albadawi scored his second goal of the night two minutes later.

Nicklaw got ATL UTD 2 on the board in the 66th minute with a Goal of the Week nominee. Sixteen-year-old Homegrown George Bello started the play by drawing in two defenders on the left side of the 18-yard-box. The left back played a pass to Laurent Kissiedou who one-timed the ball back to Gallagher on the edge of the penalty area. Gallagher switched the field to the right side where Nicklaw found himself wide open and unleashed a strike from roughly 30 yards out that picked out the top right corner. It was the Guam-international’s first goal for ATL UTD 2.

Emery Welshman added a goal in the 87th minute to set the final score at 5-1.

ATL UTD 2 (3-13-7, 16 points) returns to action Saturday, Aug. 25 against Indy Eleven at 7:00 p.m. EST at Coolray Field. The match will be streamed live on ESPN+.