Nashville SC player ratings vs. Atlanta United 2

The guys at Speedway Soccer pod are back with their player ratings, this time from Nashville SC’s 1-0 victory against Atlanta United 2.

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CJ Cochran – 7.0: Pretty quiet night. Only had to make one save. Looked confident and organized the defense well. Distribution was strong.

Kosuke Kimura – 8.0: As always, has a fantastic work rate. Made several crucial blocks, including one from point blank range early in the second half. His service into the box was on point and his passing was consistently positive.

Liam Doyle – 7.5: Shifted over to the right center back slot due to injuries/suspensions. Didn’t use his right foot once, but that’s not a real complaint. Made some crucial interventions, including blocking a Kratz freekick that was surely going into the top corner.

Justin Davis – 6.5: Slid centrally and didn’t look at all comfortable. He made a few good sliding tackles, but his positioning wasn’t great. Doyle and James were able to help him out, and he improved as the game went on.

Ryan James – 7.0: Connected really well with Ish Jome on the left and put in a really dangerous ball that Mensah couldn’t connect with. Pushed up into midfield in second half stoppage time as Nashville shifted to a back five.

Alan Winn – 7.0: Burned Mikey Ambrose multiple times and earned a couple dangerous free kicks. His final ball into the box was disappointing, though, and his set piece delivery was poor. Replaced by Washington after 74 minutes.

Matt LaGrassa – 7.5: Started in place of the injured Michael Reed and looked really good. Created two chances and made some dangerous trailing runs into the box. Gets a slight knock for not taking a single shot, often opting to pass the ball off instead of pulling the trigger.

Bolu Akinyode – 8.0: Dropped right back into the starting lineup and did what you’d expect him to do. Completed 93 percent of his passes and recycled possession well. Would have liked to see him be a bit more inventive with his forward passing, especially in the second half when Nashville needed a goal, and he gave away a few sloppy fouls. Overall another strong showing.

Ish Jome – 8.0: His best performance in a while. Was able to isolate Metcalf and gave him all kinds of trouble with his pace and his aggressiveness in 1v1 situations. Put some dangerous balls into the box, included a fantastic assist for Washington’s winner. Replaced by Jordan Dunstan in the 90th minute.

Lebo Moloto – 7.0: His off the ball movement was brilliant in the first half and he connected really well with Mensah and Winn, but faded in the second half. Had a decent chance to test Hildebrandt on the half volley, but other than that didn’t create many real chances of note, aside from an ambitious volley from distance that he couldn’t quite keep down. A decent outing, but hard to give him too much credit when Nashville only managed eight total shots.

Ropapa Mensah – 7.0: Like Moloto, had great movement. Nashville looked much more fluid and threatening with him on the field than they have in recent weeks. Also like Moloto, hard to credit too much when he didn’t manage a shot. He did create two chances, and hit the post on a strong headed effort, but it was whistled for offside. His pace definitely gives Nashville a different dynamic. Replaced by Brandon Allen after 73 minutes.

SUBS:

Brandon Allen – 6.0: Came on in place of Mensah with 17 minutes to go, and was completely anonymous. Touched the ball four times (no touches in Atlanta’s box), made three passes, and didn’t manage a shot. Gets a half-point bump for a great dummy run to free Washington on the back post for the goal. It was a really intelligent play, but was really his only contribution.

Taylor Washington – 8.5: Replaced Winn after 74 minutes and put in a great shift. Predictably, he brought a lot of energy to the side late in the game, and found himself in acres of space on the left wing. Skied a shot on his weak foot, but redeemed himself two minutes later with a tap in after being found in space by Ish Jome. Picked a great time to score his first ever professional goal.

Jordan Dunstan – N/A: Replaced Jome at the start of second half stoppage time and immediately slid in as a third center back. Didn’t have time to really get involved, but did make a decent headed clearance. Congrats to him on making his professional debut!

Manager
Gary Smith – 6.5: He did well to manage the injuries and suspension, and got 3 points against a much stronger Atlanta squad than we expected. He also gave Mensah a chance to start, which was nice to see. Still, the team only managed 8 total shots and lacked ideas in the final third. It’s an issue that is becoming more and more worrying.
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