Atlanta down Impact, close in on MLS playoffs

Atlanta United have been in scintillating form since moving into their new home at the Mercedes Benz Stadium
AFP

Atlanta (AFP) – Atlanta United extended their unbeaten home run to 11 matches on Sunday with a 2-0 victory over Montreal Impact to move up to third place in the Eastern Conference.

The Major League Soccer expansion team swept aside their opponents with goals in each half from Argentinian midfielder Hector Villalba and Jeff Larentowicz.

It was another impressive performance from Atlanta, who have been in scintillating form since moving into their new home at the Mercedes Benz Stadium two weeks ago.

Under the guidance of former Argentina coach Gerardo “Tata” Martino, Atlanta have become one of the form teams in MLS.

Another large crowd of 43,502 filled their stadium on Sunday to witness United’s latest victory.

Martino’s men have scored 19 goals in five games since making their debut in the Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

Villalba opened the scoring on Sunday with a thunderous shot on 28 minutes to give his side the lead, his right foot effort flying into the top corner to beat Evan Bush.

Larentowicz made it 2-0 in the 73rd minute, bundling home from close range after Julian Gressel’s cross from the right flank sowed panic in the Montreal defence.

The only blemish for Atlanta came early in the first half, when talented Paraguay international striker Miguel Almiron limped off injured clutching his hamstring.

Atlanta are now three points behind second placed New York City FC in the Eastern Conference and can clinch a playoff berth with victory in their next game.

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