Atlanta United defeated CF Montreal 1-0 Saturday night at Mercedes-Benz Stadium as Marcelino Moreno scored the game-winning goal in stoppage time in front of a crowd of 40,116, the highest attendance for a soccer match in the world since the COVID-19 pandemic began.
As the match appeared to be heading toward a scoreless draw, Atlanta found the breakthrough goal in the 94th minute. Santiago Sosa started the play in Atlanta’s own half, playing a ball out wide to Homegrown George Bello who quickly found second-half substitute Jake Mulraney sprinting toward goal. The Irish winger dribbled to the edge of the 18-yard box on the left side before delivering a pin-point cross to the middle of the box. Moreno jumped and headed the ball down, sending it bouncing off the right post and into the goal. It was Moreno’s second goal of the year and Mulraney’s second assist.
Atlanta United opened the match strong and pressured Montreal’s goal early, nearly scoring in the sixth minute. Moreno lofted a pass from the center of the field toward the right post where Erik López was making a run. López attempted a header at the near post, but Clément Diop made a diving save. A minute later, Bello deked a defender on the left side and raced toward the end line before floating a cross to the center of the box. Josef Martínez won the header, but his shot was lifted just over the crossbar.
Atlanta appeared to have scored in the 51st minute when Martínez played Emerson Hyndman into the box on the right side and the midfielder calmly finished with a low shot past Diop, but he was ruled offside.
Atlanta pushed for the go-ahead goal, nearly connecting on a number of plays late. In the 78th minute, Bello sent in a cross from the left for Martínez, but his header missed wide right. The Venezuelan had another opportunity in the 83rd minute when a free kick from left side was sent into the box and knocked down by Miles Robinson. A Montreal defender failed to clear the loose ball and Martínez and Diop collided in an attempt to win it, however a foul was called on the forward.
Atlanta (2-1-2, 8 points) returns to action Sunday, May 23 against Seattle Sounders FC at Lumen Field (4:30 p.m. ET, FOX, FOX Deportes, Sports Radio 92-9 The Game).
Atlanta United 1, CF Montreal 0
Shots: 10-10 tied
Shots on Target: 2-2 tied
Corner kicks: 5-3 Atlanta
Fouls committed: 15-15 tied
Offside: 2-2 tied
Possession: 63-37 Atlanta
Passing Accuracy: 88-83 Atlanta
ATL – Marcelino Moreno (Jake Mulraney) 90+4’ [HIGHLIGHT]
ATL – Santiago Sosa (yellow) 17’
MTL – Rudy Camacho (yellow) 19’
MTL – Victor Wanyama (yellow) 29’
MTL – Aljaz Struna (yellow) 90’
ATLANTA UNITED STARTING LINEUP
Brad Guzan ©; Brooks Lennon, George Bello, Alan Franco (Anton Walkes – 45’), Miles Robinson; Emerson Hyndman, Franco Ibarra, Santiago Sosa; Marcelino Moreno, Erik López (Jake Mulraney – 78’), Josef Martínez.
Substitutes not used: Ben Lundgaard, Alex De John, Mikey Ambrose, Matheus Rossetto, Ronald Hernández, Jackson Conway, Erick Torres.
CF MONTREAL STARTING LINEUP
Clément Diop; Kamal Miller, Rudy Camacho, Aljaz Struna; Victor Wanyama, Lassi Lappalainen (Zorhan Ludovic Bassong – 71’), Mathieu Choinière (Mustafa Kizza – 79’), Samuel Piette ©; Djordje Mihailovic (Ibrahim Sunusi – 79’), Romell Quioto (Erik Hurtado – 71’), Bjørn Maars Johnsen (Ahmed Hamdi – 65’).
Substitutes not used: Emanuel Maciel, Joel Waterman, Joaquín Torres, James Pantemis.
Silviu Petrescu (referee), Jeffrey Greeson (assistant), Claudiu Badea, (assistant), Elvis Osmanovic (fourth), Chris Penso (VAR), Jozef Batko (AVAR).
- Marcelino Moreno scored his second goal of the season
- Jake Mulraney recorded his second assist of the season
- Atlanta United posted its second clean sheet of the season