ATLANTA (Sept. 13, 2017) — Behind a first-half hat trick from Josef Martinez, Atlanta United defeated New England Revolution 7-0 Wednesday night to run its home unbeaten streak to eight consecutive matches. Anton Walkes, Kevin Kratz, Yamil Asad and Tito Villalba added goals as Atlanta matched the largest margin of victory in MLS history. In addition, Atlanta held New England without an attempted shot, the first time that’s happened in league history.
“Forgive me for sounding boring but I am going to repeat that we played a large part of the game up two players,” Atlanta United head coach Tata Martino said. “I do want to say that I respect how our team played after that but that had a big impact.”
Atlanta started the scoring early, with Martinez blasting a shot past Cody Cropper barely one minute into the game for the fastest goal in Atlanta United history (officially at 1:14). The play started with Miguel Almiron playing a ball through the New England defense that Martinez caught up to. After going to his left and taking on a tight angle, Martinez ripped one into the top left corner.
Martinez added a pair goals from the penalty spot before the first half ended. In the 31st minute, he went to Cropper’s right. In the 39th minute, Martinez again went to Cropper’s right, and while the keeper guessed correctly, Martinez struck the inside of the post for the goal.
In the second minute of first-half stoppage time, Walkes added Atlanta’s fourth goal of the night. Greg Garza’s cross from the left side perfectly fell to Walkes, who made his run to the far post, before settling the ball down and beating Cropper to his right.
Coming on as a second-half substitute, Kevin Kratz made it 5-0 in the 70th minute. A free kick specialist, Kratz curled one into the upper right corner for his first career MLS goal. Yamil Asad made it 6-0 just three minutes later with a right-footed shot from about 20 yards out that slid by Cropper to the far post. Chris McCann picked up his first MLS assist on the play.
In the 90th minute, Tito Villalba added Atlanta’s seventh by pouncing on a loose ball inside the penalty area. From a corner kick, Asad played a ball into Martinez that sprung free. Villalba, unmarked, tapped it past Cropper.
Atlanta (12-8-6, 42 points) returns to action Saturday, Sept. 16 against Orlando City SC. Kickoff is scheduled for 4:00 p.m. and will be televised nationally on Univision.