Inter Miami CF, coming off a 1-0 loss to fellow expansion side Nashville SC, will look to win on the road for the first time tonight, at Atlanta United.
Inter Miami struggled for most of Sunday’s match against Nashville, before a late flurry of chances after Diego Alonso used all 5 of his allotted substitutions at one time with 16 minutes remaining. It would seem logical to expect some lineup changes as the starting XI for Miami looked completely devoid of creativity and possession on Sunday.
Atlanta United, sitting at a disappointing 3-4-0 this season, has already made a managerial change this season, and is coming off a home loss to rival Orlando City.
That provides a heightened sense of urgency to this game. For Miami, a win would be the first in this newfound rivalry in MLS, its first road win, and a potential springboard to the rest of the season with star midfielder Blaise Matuidi possibly joining the squad in the next week.
Inter Miami Keys to Victory
Inter Miami’s focus will be on the midfield, which has produced six goals so far this season. Gonzalo Nicolás “Pity” Martínez scored a brace against Nashville last week, including a remarkable individual effort on the first.
On attack, Inter Miami will have to figure out how to score against US Men’s National Team keeper Brad Guzan. In Orlando, Atlanta went 0-3-0, but lost each game 1-0.
Miami’s sporting a tough 1-6-0 record but have not lost any match by more than 1 goal. This could be a sign that the team is close to turning the corner and getting hot, or it could reinforce the need for a real goal-scoring threat. Per multiple reports, Miami is close to an agreement with Juventus striker Gonzalo Higuain. This would not only solve their striker concerns, but adding Higuain and Matuidi to this team in the coming weeks could make for a late playoff push in the Eastern Conference. I think Lee Nguyen will get a significant bump in playing time, whether that means a starting nod, or a quick hook for Wil Trapp or Victor Ulloa if Miami again struggles with possession. Brek Shea also may have played himself into a bigger role, as left back Ben Sweat has continued his lackluster play of late. Atlanta likely offers a step up in terms of degree of difficulty from Nashville, and winning on the road is no easy task. Miami should be content with a point, but for now, anticipate another bump in the road.
Inter Miami 1 – 2 Atlanta United