Josef Martinez makes MLS history as Atlanta United defeats Orlando City SC
Josef Martinez broke the Major League Soccer record for goals in a season as Atlanta United defeated Orlando City SC 2-1 in Orlando on Friday night.
Martinez scored in the 74th minute to set the league record with his 28th goal of the season, surpassing the mark set by Roy Lassiter in the inaugural MLS season in 1996 and matched by Chris Wondolowski in 2012 and Bradley Wright-Phillips in 2014.
But it was center-back Leandro Gonzalez Pirez who gave Atlanta the lead after 21 minutes when a spilled cross by Orlando goalkeeper Joe Bendik fell into his path to bundle home near the goal line.
Atlanta had the better of the chances for the majority of the first half however it was Orlando which found the second goal of the night through Scott Sutter, who lashed home from the edge of the area after a beautiful back-heel Will Johnson set him up in the 39th minute.
Martinez then sealed the victory -- and his place in history -- a quarter-hour before full-time. The Venezuela international collected a Julian Gressel pass in the box, quickly cut the ball onto his right foot and confidently chipped a helpless Bendik who had rushed off his line.
The win gives first-place Atlanta a five-point advantage over the chasing New York Red Bulls in the East, while Orlando remains bottom of the table with just 23 points from 24 games.