FC Tulsa Falls at Atlanta United 2, 2-1
KENNESAW, Ga. - Fifth Third Bank Stadium is a house of horrors for FC Tulsa.
A second trip to the outskirts of Atlanta resulted in a second loss for FC Tulsa as Atlanta United used a goal in each half to emerge victorious from a 2-1 result. The difference in the match came from a penalty won by each side in the opening half. Atlanta United 2 converted its chance from the spot while Tulsa wasn't able to find the net with its penalty.
FC Tulsa mounted a spirited comeback attempt after falling behind 2-0 early in the second half and halved the deficit in the 55' minute courtesy Rodrigo da Costa's eighth goal this season. However, FC Tulsa was never able to find that equalizer.
The loss is the third consecutive defeat for FC Tulsa and marks the second three match losing streak for the club in 2021. Buoyed in the standings by its early season wins, FC Tulsa remains in USL Championship Playoff position at third in the Central Division.
Attached are Finals Stats and Postmatch Quotes from head coach Michael Nsien, midfielder Kembo Kibato and midfielder Eric Bird.
25' ATL - Amadou Diop (penalty)
49' ATL - Ajani Fortune (Robbie Mertz)
55' TUL - Rodrigo da Costa (Marlon Santos)
RIVAS RETURNS TO TULSA
After a 2021 Gold Cup where he scored three goals for El Salvador, Joaquín Rivas immediately entered the FC Tulsa Starting XI, but failed to provide the same offensive spark for Tulsa. Rivas had the fewest touches of any FC Tulsa starter with just 22 in 90 minutes.
100 FOR BIRD
The start in tonight's match gave midfielder Eric Bird 100 regular season USL Championship appearances in his career. After the match, Bird had this to say about hitting the 100 mark..."I'm proud to have made 100 appearances in the USL. This is a great league that will undoubtedly only get better. One day, it will be cool to look back on this milestone and reminisce. But now, I'm looking forward to the next 100."
DA COSTA MAKES UP FOR MISS
Rodrigo da Costa made up for a rare miss with his second half goal. Da Costa had a chance to equalize the match at 1-1 after winning a penalty late in the first half, but saw his attempt saved by Atlanta keeper Rocco Rios Novo. The Brazilian made up for his miss by finding the net midway through the second half with his eighth goal of the 2021 season.
WORMELL CONTINUES TO SHINE
Goalkeeper Austin Wormell was a bright spot for FC Tulsa in the loss, despite giving up two goals. The hometown keeper faced 17 Atlanta shots, six on target, and made four saves to give FC Tulsa the opportunity to mount a comeback. The four saves that Wormell has made in the last two matches are tied for the most made in any FC Tulsa match in 2021.
FC Tulsa will have the weekend off before a home midweek match next Wednesday, August 4 against Indy Eleven at ONEOK Field. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. CT.
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