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Fuel Soccer Talk: Atlanta champions; Changes for U.S. women’s roster; Argentina next for U.S. Para-7

U.S. Open Cup final: Atlanta scores 2-1 win over Minnesota

Another final at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, another trophy for Atlanta United.

Pity Martinez scored the eventual matchwinner in the 16th minute, six minutes after the hosts took the lead through an unusual own goal, and Atlanta captured their first-ever U.S. Open Cup championship with a 2-1 victory over Minnesota United in Tuesday night’s final.

Despite a rare scoreless evening from forward Josef Martinez and the 74th-minute dismissal of Leando Gonzalez Pirez, 10-man Atlanta held on to win their third piece of silverware inside a calendar year.

First they defeated the Portland Timbers to win 2018 MLS Cup last December. Then on Aug. 14, Atlanta defeated Liga MX’s UANL Tigres 3-2 to become the first MLS side to win the Campeones Cup.

Robin Lod scored his first goal for the Loons since his arrival from Europe during the MLS Secondary Transfer Window, pulling Minnesota back within one some 65 seconds after the break.

The visitors had chances late, the best coming when Michael Boxall volleyed over the bar from close range following a corner kick in second-half stoppage time.

FULL STORY

Short, Hamilton added to U.S. Women’s National Team roster

CHICAGO – Chicago Red Stars defender Casey Short and North Carolina Courage forward Kristen Hamilton have been added to the U.S. Women’s National Team roster for the two upcoming matches against Portugal on the 2019 Victory Tour presented by Allstate.

Hamilton, 27, was named as an overage player to the U.S. Under-23 WNT roster that is headed to England for the four-team Nordic Tournament but will instead join the USA on the Victory Tour for her first senior team call-up. Her eight goals for the second-place Courage are tied for third in the NWSL. Short, who has 27 caps, has played in 18 of the 19 matches for the third-place Red Stars so far this season.

The 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup champions will face Portugal on Thursday, Aug. 29, in front of a record crowd at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia (7 p.m. ET; FS1, FOX Sports App) and Tuesday, Sept. 3, at Allianz Field in St. Paul, Minn. (7 p.m. CT; ESPN2, ESPN App).

FULL ROSTER

U.S. Para 7-a-Side National Team faces Argentina

LIMA, Peru (Aug. 25, 2019) – After posting back-to-back shutout victories over Colombia and Venezuela to start the 2019 Parapan American Games in Lima, Peru, the U.S. Para 7-a-Side National Team now prepares for a tougher contest Monday against South American rival Argentina (9:30 a.m. ET). The game could be key to the USA’s chances of advancing to the medal round.

The USA began the tournament with a 5-0 win over Colombia on Saturday. Cameron DeLillo and Seth Jahn each scored twice and Drew Bremer added a fifth. On Sunday the USA made it back-to-back shutouts by defeating Venezuela 6-0. DeLillo continued his hot start with four goals, Bremer added another, and Nick Mayhugh, who led the team in goals at the IFCFP World Cup, notched his first of this tournament. Sean Boyle saved a penalty kick to preserve the clean sheet.

“It’s of course always nice to start the competition with two wins and two clean sheets, but we know we have some tougher tests ahead of us,” U.S. head coach Stuart Sharp said. “With our squad depth we have been able to rotate personnel, which is important with the back-to-back games with no-rest-day format.”

FULL STORY

LET’S TALK: OK, now you’ve read what’s on my mind…what are your thoughts on the above or any other “football” happenings?

Email me at tajacoby@comcast.net