Photo Credit | Eric Rossitch
Venezuelan striker now one goal shy of tying single-season record, has 18 goals in last 12 matches
ATLANTA — Josef Martinez scored twice as Atlanta United drew 2-2 with Toronto FC Saturday night at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. It’s the seventh straight game Martinez has scored, which is tied for the second-longest streak in MLS history, and it ran his season goal tally to 26, one shy of the league’s all-time single-season record. Martinez has also now scored 18 goals in his last 12 matches. Sebastian Giovinco and Tosaint Ricketts scored for Toronto FC, with the latter coming in second-half stoppage time.
Although Atlanta did not allow a single shot attempt for the first 45 minutes of the match, Toronto struck for the opening goal late in first-half stoppage time. Jozy Altidore intercepted an errant touch from Leandro Gonzalez Pirez, dribbled into the penalty area and played Auro toward the touchline where the Brazilian midfielder then played a low cross that Giovinco tapped in for his seventh goal of the season.
Atlanta equalized early in the second half as Martinez earned a penalty kick after being taken down by Alex Bono inside the six-yard box. Martinez calmly stepped up to the spot and drilled the ball into the left corner for his sixth penalty goal of the season.
Martinez then gave Atlanta the lead in the 67th minute, heading in a cross from Tito Villalba. Michael Parkhurst started the play, picking up his second assist of the season, by playing Villalba on the right wing. The Argentine forward then looped in a cross for the near post that Martinez raced to and made a diving effort to redirect the ball into the back of the net.
But Ricketts equalized for Toronto in the 91st minute to split the points. Giovinco started the play, nudging a ball through the Atlanta defense that Jonathan Osorio ultimately got to. With Guzan rushing out, Osorio crossed to the other side for Ricketts who fought off Pirez to redirect the ball into the back of the net.
Atlanta United (14-4-6, 48 points) is off next week and will return to action when it hosts Columbus Crew SC on Sunday, Aug. 19 at Mercedes-Benz Stadium (4:00 p.m., FOX Sports South, Sports Radio 92-9 The Game).
Atlanta United 2, Toronto FC 2
Shots: 22-5 Atlanta
Shots on Target: 7-2 Atlanta
Corner kicks: 5-0 Atlanta
Fouls committed: 8-7 Toronto
Saves: 4-0 Toronto
Clearances: 20-19 Atlanta
Offside: 5-3 Atlanta
Possession: 54-46 Atlanta
Passing Accuracy: 85-83 Atlanta
TOR – Sebastian Giovinco (Auro, Jozy Altidore) 45+1’ [HIGHLIGHT]
ATL – Josef Martinez (penalty) 53’ [HIGHLIGHT]
ATL – Josef Martinez (Tito Villalba, Michael Parkhurst) 67’ [HIGHLIGHT]
TOR – Tosaint Ricketts (Jonathan Osorio, Sebastian Giovinco) 90+1’ [HIGHLIGHT]
TOR – Alex Bono (yellow) 52’
TOR – Sebastian Giovinco (yellow) 60’
ATL – Eric Remedi (yellow) 72’
ATL – Jeff Larentowciz (yellow) 74’
TOR – Chris Mavinga (red) 90+5’
ATLANTA UNITED STARTING LINEUP
Brad Guzan; Leandro Gonzalez Pirez, Jeff Larentowicz, Michael Parkhurst ©; Chris McCann, Eric Remedi, Kevin Kratz (Miles Robinson – 84’), Julian Gressel; Tito Villalba (Brandon Vazquez – 90’), Miguel Almirón, Josef Martinez (Romario Williams – 79’).
Substitutes not used: Alec Kann, George Bello, Andrew Wheeler-Omiunu, Andrew Carleton.
TORONTO FC STARTING LINEUP
Alexander Bono; Chris Mavinga, Eriq Zavaleta (Ryan Telfer – 87’), Gregory van der Wiel; Justin Morrow, Jonathan Osorio, Michael Bradley ©, Victor Vázquez (Tosaint Ricketts – 81’), Auro (Marco Delgado – 59’); Jozy Altidore, Sebastian Giovinco.
Substitutes not used: Clint Irwin, Nick Hagglund, Liam Fraser, Jon Bakero.
Armando Villarreal (referee), Kyle Atkins (assistant), Cameron Blanchard (assistant), Marcos DeOliveira (fourth), Guido Gonzales (VAR).
- Atlanta allowed the first goal of the match for the eighth time this season (in 24 league matches).
- Jeff Larentowicz appeared in his 381st career game, good for fourth place all-time in MLS history by a field player.
- Larentowicz also started his 362nd career MLS game, also ranking in fourth place in MLS history by a field player.
- Martinez has now scored in seven straight games, extending his ATL UTD team record. It’s tied for the 2nd longest streak in MLS history. Diego Valeri (POR) had a 9-match streak last year.