Atlanta United leads 3-1

Atlanta United grabbed a 1-0 lead on Minnesota United in the battle of the MLS’ two newest teams on Sunday in snowy Minneapolis.

Josef Martinez opened the scoring in the third minute, driving down the left side after a pass from Miguel Almiron. Martinez picked up the pass and had only goalkeeper John Alvbage to beat. Martinez easily slid the shot into the far corner.

Atlanta United scored a goal in each of its preseason games in less than 10 minutes.

Almiron made it 2-0 in the 13th minute with a left-footed shot into the upper left corner. Julian Gressel split two lines of the defense to find Almiron, who was left unmarked at the top of the penalty box.It was Almiron’s first goal this season.

Martinez added his second in the 27th minute off another pass from Yamil Asad. Again, Minnesota United turnover over the ball in its half. Atlanta United needed just two passes to send Martinez between two defenders and at the goal. Asad’s pass was a clever one-touch pop into space that Martinez ran onto.

The Loons pulled a goal back in the 30th minute on a penalty kick by Kevin Molino. The kick was the result of one-legged lunged tackle by Jeff Larentowicz in the penalty box.