It was a thrilling and electrifying night at the Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Saturday night, December 8, as Atlanta United locked horns with Portland Timbers in the2018 MLS Cup. Playing much to the fans’ delight Atlanta United capped what seems to be their first two years in existence with a walk over the park against Portland. Atlanta secured their first ever trophy in the MLS with a 2-0wins over Portland. What a fashion to bag their first trophy in front of 73,000plus fans that is considered the biggest crowd in the league’s history.
The game began with Atlanta mounting blizzard of pressure on Portland. Portland offered little offense and spent a huge significant part of the game sitting deep. Josef Martinez, the Venezuelan, put Atlanta in the lead in the 39thminute of the first half ramping up his tally for the season to 35 goals.
The leading side had many other chances to expand their lead but they were all squandered. The lead was doubled in the 54th minute in the second half of the game by Argentinean defender, Franco Escobar. At the end of the game, Portland was only able to register only three shots on goal, which was bettered by Atlanta’s four.
The MLS cup win by Atlanta United is the first for the city since the 1995 World Series win by Atlanta Braves. The historic victory has generated a feel-good factor around the city. A parade was held on Monday 10th, December and flags were seen raised different houses.
CoachMartini’s 5 defenders at the back seems to have been very effective in keeping away the ball from ruffling the back of their net. This eventually contributed to them ending their long wait for a gong.
Road to Win
Enroute to the 2018 MLS final Atlanta beat New York Red Bulls 3-2 on aggregate in the Eastern Conference Championship. This followed the 1-0 win over New York Red Bull at the RBNY Arena. This win set up with the Sporting Kansas City whom they beat 3-2 on aggregate in the Western Conference Championship.
The game witnessed the longest shot towards goal in the MLS history. The first shot of the game did not come until the 23rd moments. A record number of 73,019 fans graced the final. This has never been experienced in any of the MLS games. Who will win MLS Cup 2019?