MLS scores: D.C. United’s upset, Zlatan’s winner for Galaxy, snowy scene in Colorado highlight opening weekend
Major League Soccer officially returned on Saturday as the 2019 season kicked off with 10 games. In total, there were 36 goals and every game had at least two goals scored, while five games saw at least four goals scored. On Sunday, there was quite the upset in the nation’s capital. Here are the scores and what to know:
MLS scoreboard, schedule
Saturday, March 2
Toronto 3, Philadelphia 1
NYCFC 2, Orlando City 2
Columbus 1, NY Red Bulls 1
Dallas 1, New England 1
Colorado 3, Portland 3
Minnesota 3, Vancouver 2
Real Salt Lake 1, Houston Dynamo 1
LA Galaxy 2, Chicago 1
Seattle Sounders 4, FC Cincinnati 1
Montreal Impact 2, San Jose 1
Sunday, March 3
D.C United 2, Atlanta United 0
LAFC 2, Sporting KC 1
D.C. takes it to reigning champs
In the rain in the nation’s capital, Wayne Rooney, Lucho Acosta and D.C. United took it to new-look Atlanta United. In the league debut of new coach Frank de Boer and with record signing Pity Martinez on the bench, Atlanta looked far from sharp and paid for having just three guys at the back. D.C. took control from the opening minute and got this Paul Arriola at the end of the first half for what proved to be the winner:
So is there a cause for concern for Atlanta? Not yet. You have to remember that the conditions of this match were poor and the team was coming off two really intense matches in the CONCACAF Champions League, coming back to eliminate Herediano. And with Monterrey of Mexico this week in the quarterfinals, Atlanta had to be a bit cautious to start the season, for example with leaving Martinez on the bench until the second half. It’s a busy start to the season for just a handful of clubs that are in the CCL, and D.C. United was able to take advantage.
That’s now two losses in three games for Atlanta’s new coach in all competitions. It’s going to take a while to get the chemistry going in his new system, but this is a big week.
Zlatan comes through, Alvarez shines in debut
The Los Angeles Galaxy started off the Guillermo Barros Schelotto era on the right foot with a come-from-behind 2-1 victory over the Chicago Fire at home. Can you guess who scored the winner? Yep, Zlatan Ibrahimovic. The big Swede came through in the second half to head home from close, but it was Efrain Alvarez who stole the show. The 16-year-old made his MLS debut, grabbing an assist and helping set up the winner. Down 1-0, Alvarez found Daniel Steres 68 minutes in for a comfortable header. Check out the cut from Alvarez, who has represented both the United States and Mexico as the youth level:
Then it was Ibra time. First Alvarez did well to get the ball to Chris Pontius, who fired off the crossbar only to then see Zlatan score from close.
A perfect start to the season for a team that missed the playoff last year but is being looked at as a contender this year.
Winter wonderland leads to spectacular, fun match
Things got wild in Colorado on Saturday. And it wasn’t because of a 3-3 draw. A snow-covered pitch officially reached -18 degrees in Commerce, City, Colo. It’s a bit wild that this game was allowed to be played, and it brought back memories from that USA vs. Costa Rica World Cup qualifier In March of 2013. Look at these images:
Here are the highlights:
It’s always cool to see these games, and you just know when the orange ball comes out, it’s going to be nuts. The lines were shoveled a few times during the game and it’s a match that will be hard to forget. As for the fans, bravo to them for sticking it out.
FC Cincinnati loses, but what a first goal
FC Cincinnati played its first match in MLS history on Saturday, and though it didn’t end well, it did start well. Leonardo Bertone scored the goal of the weekend with a rifled volley 13 minutes in that left the home crowd stunned. Take a look:
Credit for Seattle for coming back, with USMNT striker Jordan Morris scoring twice for his first goal in more than a year. The Sounders were expected to win this one and did well to control the middle of the pitch and show some fantastic finishing in front of goal.