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Messi scores but Inter Miami’s 10-match MLS unbeaten streak ends in 3-1 loss to Atlanta United

Messi scores but Inter Miami’s 10-match MLS unbeaten streak ends in 3-1 loss to Atlanta United

30/05/2024, USA, Multi Sports, USA Publications, Article # 31789987

By TIM REYNOLDS

Associated Press

FORT LAUDERDALE — Lionel Messi scored yet again. It was the lone real highlight for Inter Miami, as its 10-match Major League Soccer winning streak was ended by an Atlanta United side that got its first league win in nearly two months.

Saba Lobjanidze scored once in each half, Jamal Thiaré helped put the game away with a goal in the 73rd minute and Atlanta United snapped a nine-match MLS winless streak with a 3-1 victory on Wednesday night.

Atlanta United was 0-5-4 in MLS play since beating Chicago 3-0 on March 31. But it never trailed on Wednesday, with Lobjanidze scoring late in the first half to put his side on top and adding the second in the 59th minute. After Messi’s score, Atlanta United kept all 10 field players in the defensive end whenever the hosts had deep possession in the final 30 minutes.

Messi got his 11th goal of the MLS season, tying Luis Suarez for the team lead. Inter Miami (10-3-4, 34 points) kept a one-point lead atop the Eastern Conference and the overall MLS standings over Cincinnati (10-3-3, 33 points). Cincinnati lost to Nashville on Wednesday night, missing a chance to take the top spot.

“We were missing a gear,” Inter Miami coach Gerardo “Tata” Martino said through an interpreter.

Inter Miami entered Wednesday with a 7-0-3 mark in its last 10 MLS matches. It is now 10-0-4 when allowing two goals or less in MLS play this season — and 0-3-0 when surrendering three goals or more.

“I’d say it was a night where the team went backwards from other matches,” Martino said.

So, Wednesday was a dud. The first half of the season, though, has gone largely to plan.

With 34 points through exactly half the MLS schedule — matching its total from all of the 2023 season, when Messi joined around the midway point and helped the team win Leagues Cup but couldn’t get it into the playoffs — Inter Miami is on pace for 68 points this season.

Mathematically, yes, that’s correct.

Realistically, well, probably not so much.

The plan, for now, calls for Messi to play at least some minutes when Inter Miami plays host to St. Louis on Saturday. After that, Messi will be trading Inter Miami’s pink kit for the blue of Argentina — playing for country instead of club for a bit.

Copa América — the 16-team tournament which runs from June 20 through July 14 — is looming, with Messi set to play for defending champion Argentina and Suarez a possibility to play for Uruguay. They may miss MLS matches when Inter Miami plays at Philadelphia (June 15), vs. Columbus (June 19), at Nashville (June 29), at Charlotte (July 3) and at Cincinnati (July 6). Following the Copa América final, Miami also has home matches against Toronto (July 17) and Chicago (July 20).

Unlike most leagues, MLS schedules games during some FIFA fixture periods, when release of players to national teams is mandatory. And after Copa, it would seem likely that Inter Miami may lose some players again when national teams call for the Paris Olympics.

Messi had some opportunities in the early going, including a diving header about four minutes into the match off a chip into the middle of the box by Jordi Alba. Messi, fending off some contact, sent the ball into the turf and the carom spun over the crossbar; he gave Alba a thumbs-up for the idea as he picked himself up from the grass with a smile.

And in the 21st minute, Messi sent a chip toward the left post — just over a leaping Robert Taylor, who would have had plenty of net to aim for had he been able to attempt the header.

His goal in the 63rd minute was a typical Messi masterpiece, threading a ball between two defenders and just inside the right post, barely out of the reach of a diving Atlanta goalie Josh Cohen.



https://www.orlandosentinel.com/2024/05/29/messi-scores-but-inter-miamis-10-match-mls-unbeaten-streak-ends-in-3-1-loss-to-atlanta-united-2/
Rockies’ Ty Blach shuts down Guardians in 7-4 Colorado victory

Rockies’ Ty Blach shuts down Guardians in 7-4 Colorado victory

30/05/2024, USA, Multi Sports, USA Publications, Article # 31789812

The Rockies’ May resurgence rests on their starting pitching, and Ty Blach has been central to the revival.

The Denver native began the season at Triple-A Albuquerque, got called up as a reliever, and was inserted into the starting rotation out of necessity.

Now he’s pitching like he should have been in there all along.

Wednesday night, the veteran left-hander pitched seven solid innings, setting the table for Colorado’s 7-4 win over Cleveland at Coors Field in front of an announced crowd of 21,374.

After a miserable April, the Rockies have been a different team this month. They have won four of their last six series and 12 of their last 19 games.

Blach got plenty of support from an offense that is finally starting to heat up. Colorado scorched Cleveland for six runs in the second inning, sending 10 men to the plate and rapping out five hits.

Brendan Rodgers’ two-run homer to left off shaky lefty starter Logan Allen was the big blow. The Rockies also got RBI doubles from Jacob Stallings and Elias Diaz, a bloop RBI single from Hunter Goodman and a sacrifice fly from Sean Bouchard.

The Rockies’ first run came in the first when Ezequiel Tovar led off with a walk, took second a wild pitch and scored on Ryan McMahon’s pop-up single to left.

Blach’s seven innings, as well as his five strikeouts, were season highs. He allowed six hits and two walks, but the Guardians barely laid a glove on him after the first inning. The Regis Jesuit graduate is 2-1 with a 3.42 ERA in four starts at Coors this season.

Wednesday marked Blach’s second quality start in a row. Last Friday against Philadelphia, he allowed two runs on five hits over 6 2/3 innings.

Blach’s critical test came with two outs in the first inning.

The Guardians had already scored two runs and packed the bases when Blach issued back-to-back walks to Jonathan Rodriguez and Gabriel Arias. Blach is not known as a strikeout pitcher by any means, but he whiffed Austin Hedges on four pitches, fanning him with an 81.7 mph changeup.

The Rockies only had nine hits but hit 3 for 6 with runners in scoring position. Rodgers had a 2-for-4 night to boost his average to .266.

For a nice change of pace, there was not excessive late-inning drama from Colorado’s bullpen.

Jalen Beeks pitched a perfect eighth inning before Tyler Kinley gave up two runs in the ninth. His third-strike wild pitch allowed Rodriguez to reach first. Rodriguez came around to score on Will Brennan’s single.

Brennan took second on defensive indifference and scored on Brayan Rocchio’s single. But with two runners on base, Kinley struck out Andres Gimenez to end the game.

Want more Rockies news? Sign up for the Rockies Insider to get all our MLB analysis.

The Rockies are off on Thursday. They begin a three-game series against the Dodgers on Friday in Los Angeles.

Pitching probables

Friday: Rockies RHP Dakota Hudson (1-7, 5.54 ERA) at Dodgers RHP Walker Buehler (1-2, 4.26), 8:10 p.m.

Saturday: Rockies RHP Cal Quantrill (4-3, 3.53) at Dodgers RHP Yoshinobu Yamamoto (5-3, 3.51), 8:10 p.m.

Sunday: Rockies LHP Austin Gomber (1-2, 2.76) at Dodgers RHP Gavin Stone (5-2, 3.16), 2:10 p.m.

 



https://www.denverpost.com/2024/05/29/ty-blach-shuts-down-guardians-rockies-win/
Cuypers rallies Fire to 1-1 draw with Orlando City

Cuypers rallies Fire to 1-1 draw with Orlando City

30/05/2024, USA, Multi Sports, USA Publications, Article # 31789853

CHICAGO (AP) — Hugo Cuypers scored midway through the second half to rally the Chicago Fire to a 1-1 draw with Orlando City on Wednesday night.

Cuypers scored for a fourth time in his first season with Chicago (2-8-6), using assists from defender Arnaud Souquet and Maren Haile-Selassie to find the net in the 70th minute. Haile-Selassie’s contribution came after he subbed in for Thomas Barlow in the 61st minute.

The Fire earned a point but saw their winless streak reach nine in a row. Chicago’s last win was 2-1 at home over the Houston Dynamo on April 6.

Orlando City (4-6-5) jumped in front in the 4th minute when Facundo Torres slipped a shot out of a crowd past Fire goalkeeper Chris Brady for his second netter of the season. It was the 32nd goal of Torres’ career, moving him past Nani into second place on the club’s all-time list. Cyle Larin leads with 44.

Brady turned away one shot for the Fire. Pedro Gallese stopped one shot for Orlando City.

Defender Robin Jansson made his club-record 175th appearance for Orlando City in all competitions.

Orlando City is now 25-22-21 away from home under manager Oscar Pareja, including 12-6-6 since the start of 2023. Only FC Cincinnati, with 13, has more road wins over that span.

Orlando City stays on the road to play the New York Red Bulls on Saturday. The Fire will host the Los Angeles Galaxy on Saturday.

____

AP soccer: https://apnews.com/hub/soccer and https://twitter.com/AP_Sport



https://www.orlandosentinel.com/2024/05/29/cuypers-rallies-fire-to-1-1-draw-with-orlando-city/
Orlando City winds up with draw in Chicago

Orlando City winds up with draw in Chicago

30/05/2024, USA, Multi Sports, USA Publications, Article # 31789914

CHICAGO — Hugo Cuypers scored midway through the second half to rally the Chicago Fire to a 1-1 draw with Orlando City on Wednesday night.

Cuypers scored for a fourth time in his first season with Chicago (2-8-6), using assists from defender Arnaud Souquet and Maren Haile-Selassie to find the net in the 70th minute. Haile-Selassie’s contribution came after he subbed in for Thomas Barlow in the 61st minute.

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - MAY 29: Referee Malik Badawi gives a yellow card to Brian Gutiérrez #17 of Chicago Fire FC after he tripped up Iván Angulo #77 of Orlando City SC during the second half at Soldier Field on May 29, 2024 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
Referee Malik Badawi gives a yellow card to Chicago’s Brian Gutiérrez (17) after he tripped up Orlando City’s Iván Angulo during the second half at Soldier Field on Wednesday night.  (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

The Fire earned a point but saw their winless streak reach nine in a row. Chicago’s last win was 2-1 at home over the Houston Dynamo on April 6.

Orlando City (4-6-5) jumped in front in the 4th minute when Facundo Torres slipped a shot out of a crowd past Fire goalkeeper Chris Brady for his second netter of the season. It was the 32nd goal of Torres’ career, moving him past Nani into second place on the club’s all-time list. Cyle Larin leads with 44.

Brady turned away one shot for the Fire. Pedro Gallese stopped one shot for Orlando City.

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - MAY 29: Fabian Herbers #21 of Chicago Fire FC and Dagur Dan Þórhallsson #17 of Orlando City SC battle for control of the ball during the second half at Soldier Field on May 29, 2024 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
Chicago’s Fabian Herbers  and Orlando City’s Dagur Dan Thorhallsson  battle for control of the ball during the second half at Soldier Field on Wednesday night.  (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

Defender Robin Jansson made his club-record 175th appearance for Orlando City in all competitions.

Orlando City is 25-22-21 away from home under Oscar Pareja, including 12-6-6 since the start of 2023. Only FC Cincinnati, with 13, has more road wins over that span.

 

Up next

Orlando City at N.Y. Red Bulls

When: Saturday at Red Bull Arena, 7:30 p.m.

TV: Apple TV

 



https://www.orlandosentinel.com/2024/05/29/cuypers-rallies-fire-to-1-1-draw-with-orlando-city/
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