Atlanta United and Orlando City played to a draw in front of Orlando City fans, extending Atlanta’s undefeated run in Orlando (no, we’re not including MLS is Back) and leaving Atlanta at 7th in the Eastern Conference.
#ATLUTD’s Starting XI vs @OrlandoCitySC. pic.twitter.com/UH3Ohaum2x— Atlanta United FC (@ATLUTD) September 5, 2020
At one point, Cubo Torres decided to do something cool and created his own chance for a goal.
Then, an onslaught of chances started going against Atlanta.
GUUUZZZZ pic.twitter.com/lgP16evzxv— Atlanta United FC (@ATLUTD) September 6, 2020
And one eventually went in.
Benji Michel scored after a scramble in the penalty area that came from a corner kick.
They don't all have to be bangers. That'll do, @AlmightBenji #ORLvATL | #VamosOrlando pic.twitter.com/uhb9XGkvv2— Orlando City SC (@OrlandoCitySC) September 6, 2020
It was bound to happen. You can only get away with so much.
Here’s a summation of Atlanta’s first half:
Orlando are literally walking through them at the other end too.— Chris Smith (@CJSmith91) September 6, 2020
Look at the state of their tackle map, some frantic last-ditch defending keeping Atlanta in this#UniteAndConquer #ATLUTD #OrlandoCity pic.twitter.com/fEEMtR9xPp
Cubo missed the chance to grab his first Atlanta United goal less than a minute into first half after sending a close range header wide.
In the 79th minute, SUBSTITUTE Luis Nani nearly scored off a free kick.
Inches from popping smoke again! #ORLvATL | #VamosOrlando pic.twitter.com/2fV0P1O1o3— Orlando City SC (@OrlandoCitySC) September 6, 2020
Substitute Jake Mulraney set up substitute Adam Jahn for a header minutes before the final whistle to secure a point for Atlanta.
STOPPAGE TIME GOAL! @AdamJahn14 on a beautiful ball from Jake Mulraney to tie the game late for @ATLUTD. #ORLvATL pic.twitter.com/LitZFG6fRN— Major League Soccer (@MLS) September 6, 2020
- George Bello is growing into his role, and I’m ecstatic about that. Throughout the match, Bello showed his defensive capabilities and saved Atlanta’s behind on multiple occasion while also going forward to help the attack. At only 18-years-old, Bello is finally showing why so many fans have been waiting for him to showcase his talent and contribute in a meaningful way. Without his recoveries, Orlando would have put up more than one goal.
- As entertaining as last ditch, high stake tackles can be, that sort of defensive play isn't sustainable (as we saw in the first half).
- I don't know what Steven Glass said at halftime, but Atlanta came out looking for a goal, which is a better reaction than I expected from a team that is dealing with mental blocks and confidence issues as much as anything else.
- We got to see Jurgen Damm for more than 15 minutes, and I felt he did well during his substitute appearance. His willingness to take on defenders and his pace add something almost Tito-esque (i.e. useful and different) that others can’t.
- Miles Robinson is the real deal. If he can continue to improve his on-the-ball play, he’s going to make a European club very happy someday. Tonight wasn’t his best performance by any means, but a few bright moments in the first half can serve as a reminder of his quality.
- I hate to write about this after every match, but the team misses Josef. And that is all I will say on the matter.
- Fernando Meza is still out with an undisclosed injury, according to MLS
Man of the Match
George Bello. Atlanta definitely would not have gotten a point from this match if not for Bello.
Tweet of the Match
Re: Bello’s goal preventing, last second tackles
Marietta Marcelo— Ryan Catanese (@rcatanese) September 6, 2020
Douglasville Dani Alves— Ryan Catanese (@rcatanese) September 6, 2020
Ryan is good at Twitter.
nani off the post. we're technically still in this if you still believe in hopes and dreams and other lies— Dirty South Soccer (@DirtySouthSoc) September 6, 2020
Do you? Do you still believe in these things?
Atlanta will play away to Miami on Wednesday with kickoff scheduled at 8 p.m.