ATLANTA (Aug. 29, 2020) - Orlando City SC (4-2-2, 14 points) earned a 3-1 victory on Saturday afternoon over Atlanta United (3-4-0, 9 points) at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
Júnior Urso scored his first goal as a Lion to open the scoring in the match in the 13th minute, followed by a finish from Chris Mueller in the 35th to give the visitors a two-goal lead at the half. The goal was Mueller’s sixth of the year, setting a new single-season high and tying LAFC forward Diego Rossi for the league-lead. Nani added the insurance goal in the 86th to give the Lions their second-consecutive victory.
With an assist on Urso’s goal, Mueller recorded his 14th for the Club, moving into second in its history to tie former Lion Yoshi Yotún. Coming into the match, Mueller sat tied at third with former City forward Carlos Rivas.
Head Coach Oscar Pareja:
“The message right away was that we were very happy for the group today that played with a lot of commitment, energy and discipline, especially. They got three points that are going to be marked in the history of the Club. The three points are the most important, but it’s motivation as well for them knowing that this is the first time they beat Atlanta. We’re happy, we keep going. There’s a short turnaround and we’re proud of those boys, they’re doing well.”
13’ Júnior Urso (Chris Mueller) - ORL 1, ATL 0
The Lions opened the scoring with Chris Mueller whipping in an out-swinging corner from the right side and Júnior Urso running onto it, whose header was too much for Atlanta goalkeeper Brad Guzan to handle as the ball crossed the line before he could control it.
35’ Chris Mueller (Benji Michel, Daryl Dike) - ORL 2, ATL 0
City doubled its advantage with Daryl Dike threading the needle to find Benji Michel running in behind the Atlanta defense, who played the unselfish pass across the face of goal to a wide-open Mueller at the far post for the tap-in finish.
83’ Brooks Lennon (Jürgen Damm, Ezequiel Barco) - ORL 2, ATL 1
Atlanta cut the Lions’ lead in half after Ezequiel Barco found Jürgen Damm on the right flank, who whipped in a cross that found the head of Brooks Lennon for the score.
86’ Nani (Júnior Urso) - ORL 3, ATL 1
City regained their two-goal lead just three minutes later, with Júnior Urso picking the pocket of Pity Martínez in the Five Stripes’ defensive third, creating a 2v1 situation and laying off the ball to Nani, who tapped it in to seal the victory.
- On his 24th birthday, Chris Mueller netted his sixth finish of the year to set a new personal season-high and tie LAFC forward Diego Rossi for the MLS lead.
- Nani found the back of the net for the third time in regular-season play and fifth across all competitions.
- Júnior Urso scored his first goal as a Lion in the match, while adding his second assist of the season on Nani’s 86th minute finish.
- Chris Mueller earned his third assist in as many contests on Urso’s first-half finish and the 14th of his City career, passing Carlos Rivas (13) to tie Yoshi Yotún (14) for second in Club history.
- Daryl Dike recorded his second assist and Benji Michel his first of 2020 on Mueller’s goal in the 35th minute.
- Uri Rosell captained the Lions on the afternoon for the first time in the 40th start of his City tenure.
- Kyle Smith, Andrés Perea and Benji Michel each earned their first start since the Lions’ second match of the regular season at Colorado on March 7. The starts served as the second of 2020 for Smith and Perea, while the third for Michel.
- The win over the Five Stripes served as the first for the Lions in matchup history.
Next Match: The Lions remain on the road for a midweek fixture at Nashville SC on Wednesday, Sept. 2, serving as their first trip to the Music City.