Giorgos Giakoumakis scored twice as Atlanta United defeated the host Seattle Sounders 2-0 on Sunday night as MLS action resumed following a break for the inaugural Leagues Cup.
Brad Guzan made two saves to post the shutout for Atlanta (10-7-8, 38 points), which won in coach Gonzalo Pineda’s return to Seattle, where he played and served as an assistant coach.
Goalkeeper Stefan Frei, back in the lineup following finger surgery, was credited with five saves for the Sounders (10-9-6, 36 points).
Atlanta opened the scoring in the 11th minute. Brooks Lennon’s corner kick from the right wing found Giakoumakis near the penalty spot, and Giakoumakis’ powerful header found the upper right corner, with a leaping Frei only able to get his fingertips on the ball before it reached the back of the net.
Frei made four saves in the first half, including diving stops on attempts by Giakoumakis in the 36th minute and Xande Silva, who was making his Atlanta debut, in stoppage time.
Giakoumakis doubled Atlanta’s advantage in the 65th minute on a counterattack.
Thiago Almada’s cross from outside the top left corner of the penalty area found Giakoumakis at the top of the 6-yard box near the far post. Giakoumakis then put a header into the turf that bounced over a sprawling Frei. It was Giakoumakis’ 12th goal in 18 matches this season.
The Sounders had two strong chances shortly after Giakoumakis’ second goal, but Albert Rusnak missed wide left and substitute Fredy Montero put an attempt just wide of the left post following an Atlanta turnover deep in its own end.
Atlanta kept possession of the ball for 62.4 percent of the game. Seattle held a 16-9 advantage in shots, but the Sounders put only two of theirs on target compared to seven by the Five Stripes.
Frei made his 340th appearance in all competitions for the Sounders, breaking the franchise record set by midfielder Osvaldo Alonso, now an Atlanta reserve.
—Field Level Media
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