Major League Soccer’s Week 2 has been a wild one ahead of the nightcap between Los Angeles FC and Portland Timbers in California. The 10 games already played saw 18 goals scored and an entertaining slate of games on Sunday. Wayne Rooney and D.C. United went into Yankee Stadium and got a valuable draw, Sporting Kansas City bounced back from a tough week with a win and Atlanta United’s struggles continued. Here are the scores and three takeaways:
Week 2 Schedule
All times eastern
Saturday, March 9
Chicago Fire 1, Orlando City 1
Columbus Crew 2, New England Revolution 0
FC Dallas 2, LA Galaxy 0
Houston Dynamo 2, Montreal Impact 1
Real Salt Lake 1, Vancouver Whitecaps 0
Minnesota United 3, San Jose 0
Real Salt Lake 1, Vancouver 0
Sunday, March 10
New York City 0, D.C. United 0
Sporting KC 2, Philadelphia Union 0
Atlanta United 1, FC Cincinnati 1
Los Angeles FC vs. Portland Timbers, 7:30 p.m. — FS1 and fuboTV (Try for free)
Atlanta United continues to struggle under new manager
It’s not time to hit the panic button in Atlanta, but if this were Real Madrid, Frank de Boer might be out of a job. Replacing Tata Martino and Miguel Almiron was never going to be easy, but nobody foresaw these types of struggles.
Let’s recap this, shall we?
- Before the regular season starts, Atlanta United goes to Costa Rica and loses 3-1 to Herediano in the CONCACAF Champions League round of 16 first leg 3-1. The Five Stripes come back in the second leg with a 4-0 win.
- Atlanta goes to D.C. United and loses in MLS opener 2-0 and then three days later they go to Monterrey in the CCL quarters and lose the first leg 3-0, registering just one shot on goal.
- And on Sunday, welcoming MLS’ newest club in FC Cincinnati, Atlanta allows just one shot on goal. But that comes in the 86th minute and it finds the net, with Roland Lamah canceling out Josef Martinez’s opener for a 1-1 draw. Atlanta had 10 shots, four on frame but couldn’t score more than one, dropping points once again. The best attack in MLS from a year ago has just one goal in its last three matches in all competitions.
Now, it’s hardly time for to be De Boer on the hot seat, but let’s be honest here — he hasn’t really had any coaching success in the last few years. He had a great run at Ajax but then did next to nothing at Inter Milan and Crystal Palace. In fact, since 2016 he has just one league win.
It’s going to take a while for Atlanta to adjust to the new system, and he certainly has a long leash, as one would expect. But with some tough matches coming up, the results need to come sooner rather than later before this team falls off the map like Toronto FC did last season.
D.C., NYCFC play out valuable draw where goalkeepers shine
Sean Johnson and Bill Hamid stole the show in the D.C. vs. NYCFC match at Yankee Stadium. Johnson finished with six saves including a couple from close, but Hamid made three saves, two coming super late. Check out this late stop by Hamid from close:
In a game with a ton of attacking talent and two teams that both scored multiple goals in their opener, their figured to be some in this one but the goalkeepers weren’t having it. It’s not that either defense played particularly well, but the goalkeepers managed to make some fantastic saves to keep the other attack out.
Overall, it’s a fine result for D.C. who has four points. NYCFC has now played back-to-back draws with a tricky upcoming schedule against LAFC and Toronto FC.
Seattle’s hot start was expected, but Minnesota?
Seattle and Minnesota are the only teams to win their first two games so far. With Seattle, it isn’t much of a surprise as this team looks like a contender in the west, but Minnesota’s start is more than surprising. United averaged 1.4 goals per game last season but is averaging 3.0 goals per game so far this season. The team’s fluidity from midfield to attack has been noticeable, and 27 shots in two games tells you that there are chances and they are taking them. Most impressively, both of Minnesota’s wins have come away from home. Their first five games are away as they await the opening of Allianz Field on April 13. With games against Los Angeles Galaxy, New England Revolution and New York Red Bulls up coming, four points from those three games would have them sitting pretty ahead of their home opener against NYCFC.
You can watch select MLS matches on fuboTV (Try for free).