Welcome to The Wrap, wherein I recap the content from last week’s Nashville SC game.
However, ATL UTD 2 created plenty of dangerous moments – including a stoppage-time goal that was called back after barely being ruled offside – and Nashville SC was tested when it came to making sure their own scoring output would be enough to take the victory.
After giving up a 2-0 lead last weekend against the Pittsburgh Riverhounds, Nashville will be extremely happy to hold on this evening – thanks in part to a 76th-minute Atlanta red card (defender George Campbell made a reckless tackle on Nashville’s Michael Reed, perhaps a harsh red, though certainly a cardable offense) that allowed the Boys in Gold to close out against a 10-man side.
The game column with quotes therefrom:
There was no doubt or hesitation on Nashville’s second goal. A clearing header from the Atlanta box went only as far as midfielder Matt LaGrassa just outside the penalty area. LaGrassa took a settling touch with his dominant right foot, then hammered the ball with his left. He found the bottom corner, and Nashville had its winning margin.
“I just had the ball pop up to me, and I struck it cleanly,” LaGrassa said. “Sometimes, they just come off that way. Obviously I am happy to get the goal.”
“Matt was in the right place at the right time and the finish was wonderful on that surface,” Smith added.
The voting post for your community ratings, and here are the results (for what it’s worth, less than a quarter of the typical number of responses .Don’t forget to vote each game! Maybe I won’t forget to publish the ratings post immediately after the end of the game next time!):
- Man of the match: M Matt LaGrassa: 8.250 Community comment:
- “Goal was a little lucky, but he deserves it because he’s been underrated this season.“
- GK Connor Sparrow: 8.13 Community comments:
- “Clean sheet, no mistakes = perfect score”
- D Ken Tribbett: 7.88
- D Bradley Bourgeois 7.75 Community comments:
- “Miss you bb. Glad he’s playing more lately.”
- D Justin Davis: 7.25
- D Kosuke Kimura: 7.25
- D Justin Davis: 7.25
- M Bolu Akinyode: 7.63
- M Michael Reed: 6.75
- M Lebo Moloto: 5.88 Community comment:
- “Did the job”
- F Daniel Ríos: 6.63 Community comment:
- “Has really lost his form lately. Please find it, Mr. Ríos”
- F Kharlton Belmar: 6.50
- F Ropapa Mensah: 6.13
- F Alan Winn: 6.13
- Head coach Gary Smith: 7.25 Community comment:
- “3-5-2 worked again, but one goal (plus an own goal) shouldn’t be acceptable against this Atlanta team, even in shitty weather.”
- Overall team rating: 7.88
Here are Nashville SC’s defensive actions before the hourlong lightning delay, and those after. The Boys in Gold (white) were attacking right-to-left:
That’s hardly a gegenpress, to be fair, but over a third of NSC’s pre-delay defensive actions (11 of 30 from players other than the keeper) came on the Atlanta side of midfield. After the break? Six of 46 non-keeper actions came in opposing territory.
Film room on how Atlanta’s own goal was earned by NSC more than it initially looked:
Would still love to see it broken out on occasion.