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Recap: Josef Martinez Scores Twice in 2-0 Win Over Chicago

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The best possible way to head into vacation.

MLS: Chicago Fire at Atlanta United FC Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

ATLANTA, Ga. - Josef Martinez scored twice for the second straight game and Atlanta United jumped to the top of the Eastern Conference as the Five Stripes defeated Chicago 2-0 in their final game before a long international break.

The things that happened in the game that was played

Well if this isn’t just one of the prettiest team goals this club has ever scored.

Atlanta fans didn’t have to wait long for the game-winner tonight. It took just 12 minutes before Pity Martinez bagged his second assist and Josef sent home his ninth goal of the season in style.

While everyone appreciated the teamwork behind the first goal, Josef felt like he should give everyone a break on the next one.

In the 43rd minute WHOOOOOOOOOOOOOSHHHHHHHHHHHHH

The Five Stripes took the two goal lead and sat on it the rest of the way. A two goal lead for this side feels like a certain win at this point in the year and that was certainly the case today.

A Recap Thought: As close to a sure thing

There is a finality to a two goal Atlanta United lead this year. Increasingly, a one goal lead feels like it’s more than enough to get the job done. For all the attacking struggles, the defensive side of this team is the best its ever been and the slowly rising, Josef-sized behemoth inching its way above the MLS horizon (or something) is a strong hint that the attacking struggles may not be around too much longer.

If Pity and Josef continue to mesh and this team is able to regularly scrape together a couple of goals, it feels like this team can be historically great at protecting leads. They might be historically great defensively just in general.

There’s a long way to go in the season, but with team improving and finally having a moment to sit back and enjoy a break, this week may be a demarcation between a team that hadn’t quite put the pieces together and a team that is clearly an MLS Cup contender.

Frank de Boer said post-game that there are, of course, small details to improve on. But the break is well deserved and this team is closer than ever to what he wants it to be. Seems encouraging.

DSS Man of the Match

Build the statue.

Larentowicz Man of the Match (Your unsung hero(es))

Eric Remedi had a solid game tonight. Positioned himself well. Didn’t make many mistakes on the ball. A quietly good Remedi game. The best kind.

(Also, shoutout to Brek for a solid shift as a substitute.)

Quote of the Night

“Yep.”

- Frank de Boer when asked if Atlanta United is looking to add a new player in the upcoming window.

Tweet of the Night

What’s Next?

A looonnngggg break. Atlanta United makes the trip to take on annual Open Cup pals the Charleston Battery on June 11 if you’re into that sort of thing. Major League Soccer returns June 26 in Toronto.