NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Boys in Gold remain undefeated at their new fortress. In three league games, Nashville SC is 2-0-1 at GEODIS Park. The latest? A 2-1 victory over the East’s first-place team, CF Montreal in front of 26,003 fans. Alex Muyl potted a solo blast while Hany Mukhtar dunked home on the doorstep to give the Boys in Gold enough to overcome Kei Kamara’s goal for the visitors.
Nashville set up to press high – as did the opposition – and it almost paid off in the 12th minute, with Brian Anunga making a step just outside the Montreal box to intercept a pass and first-time it to CJ Sapong, but he was adjudged to have committed a foul in the process. Cagey moments would continue to see both teams fail to create much in the way of attacking danger.
In the 28th minute, Nashville SC found its opener. After a Joe Willis goal kick, wingback Alex Muyl dribbled past Kamal Miller at the top corner of the box, cut onto his left foot, and drilled a lefty-strike into the far corner. While Montreal keeper Sebastian Breza got a paw to it, there was nothing he could do to keep it out.
Shortly after halftime, it was Nashville’s two key attacking players that combined to double the lead. A ball over the top and a touch on from Hany Mukhtar saw CJ Sapong win a very physical duel against Montreal defender Joel Waterman. Left 1v1 with Breza near the left post, Sapong squared to Mukhtar for the easy dunk.
The two-goal lead would be short-lived. An odd play saw Victor Wanyama’s cross fumbled by Joe Willis… straight into the feet of an on-rushing Kei Kamara. The 37-year-old knew little about it, but being in the right place at the right time is a crucial characteristic for successful striker play. They all count for just one, and rattling off his legs into the net was enough to get him on the scoresheet.
Defense-minded subs for Nashville kept Montreal from leveling the score, though Montreal poured on the pressure: the final six shots of the game – and plenty of possession in Nashville’s attacking third – kept the hosts from being comfortable. But in GEODIS Park, they’ve never been anything but comfortable, and a 3-0-1 record in all competitions (including an extra-time win in the US Open Cup last week) only builds on an undefeated mark from a year ago.
With the win, Nashville improves to 5-4-3 in league play, good for sixth place in the Western Conference. NSC will host Atlanta United for the second time in 10 days this weekend, hoping the form from the second half of the Cup win a week ago carries over into regular-season play. The game kicks at 6:38 CDT from a place that no visitor has yet found a victory.
- 28′ NSH GOAL – 19 Alex Muyl (left-footed from top of box, after dribble), assisted by 1 Joe Willis (goal kick)
- 41′ NSH Yellow card – 10 Hany Mukhtar (simulation)
- 43′ NSH Yellow card – 19 Alex Muyl (foul)
- 45’+2 Half time
- HT MTL Substitutions –
- On 19 Zorhan Bassong, off 21 Lassi Lappalainen
- On 7 Ahmed Hamdi, off 29 Mathieu Chonière
- 51′ NSH GOAL – 10 Hany Mukhtar (right foot, first time), assisted by 17 CJ Sapong (pass from Man City zone after winning duel)
- 55′ MTL GOAL – 23 Kei Kamara (uh… ball bounces off his feet from failed clearance?)
- 59′ MTL Substitution – On 30 Romell Quioto, off 10 Joaquin Torres
- 65′ NSH Substitutions –
- On 54 Sean Davis, off 6 Dax McCarty
- On 15 Eric Miller, off 26 Luke Haakenson
- 70′ MTL Substitutions –
- On 14 Sunusi Ibrahim, off 8 Djordje Mihailovic
- On 6 Samuel Piette, off 2 Victor Wanyama
- 75′ NSH Substitution – On 20 Aniibal Godoy, off 19 Alex Muyl
- 90’+1 NSH Substitution – On 11 Ethan Zubak, off 17 CJ Sapong
- 90’+2 Full time