Miami outlasts Atlanta United; win 2-1

Atlanta United lost to Inter Miami FC 2-1 Saturday night at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Jon Gallagher scored his first MLS goal and George Bello added his first assist. After a wide-open first 15 minutes of the match, Atlanta began to control the pace and possession of the match, and despite a hard-fought effort that saw Atlanta win 59 percent of its duels – its second highest of the season – the team was unable to find an equalizer. 

The action started early with Inter Miami CF starting the scoring less than two minutes into the match. After Juan Agudelo played Lewis Morgan free down the left flank, Morgan crossed into the box for Rodolfo Pizzaro. Miles Robinson was there to clear, but unfortunately for Atlanta, his clearance was deflected right toward Agudelo, who had an open shot from 10 yards that the veteran striker was able to finish for a quick 1-0 lead.

Atlanta immediately answered, however, as Gallagher smashed home a goal in the fifth minute. Luis Robles’ failed clearance fell to Jake Mulraney and two passes later, Bello was in along the left wing where he found Gallagher open with space inside the box. After taking a couple of touches, Gallagher ripped a left-footed shot into the upper corner to equalize.

Miami was able to re-take the lead in the 11th minute from Brek Shea. Off a throw-in, Pizarro found space near the end line and crossed over the top of Brad Guzan to find the 6-foot-3 winger, where the veteran was able to head in the go-ahead goal.

Despite controlling possession for the majority of the second half with 63 percent, Atlanta was unable to find an equalizer. Second-half substitute Cubo Torres had the best opportunity in the 69th minute, heading a cross from Brooks Lennon, but Robles’ diving save kept Miami ahead.