Anatomy of a Goal: Pinho Levels Against Atlanta United

Oct 11, 2017

Nearly three and a half months ago, Miami FC hosted Atlanta United FC of the MLS for a pivotal U.S. Open Cup Round of 16 match. The Orange and Blue came away with a thrilling last-gasp 3-2 win after Kwadwo Poku's famous match-winning goal, but Miami's first goal was just as poetically beautiful. 

Here's how Stéfano Pinho leveled the match at 1-1 and got Miami back on track.

Time of Goal: 37th minute with Miami down 1-0
Goalscorer: Stéfano Pinho
Assister: Kwadwo Poku
Other Contributors: Michael Lahoud

Atlanta United controls the ball on the left wing with defender Mark Bloom in possession. Bloom feels pressure from Miami midfielder Michael Lahoud and plays a pass to the middle for midfielder Chris McCann.

As the ball nears McCann, he lets it roll and turns towards his own goal. Miami forward Kwadwo Poku has employed a high press and forces McCann into a turnover in his own territory. Poku latches on to the dispossessed ball and rumbles forward towards an unprepared and out of place Atlanta back line.

With Poku springing forward, striker Stéfano Pinho begins a supporting run of his own. Pinho finds open space as Atlanta defender Anton Walkes has to gravitate towards Poku, who has taken a fantastic touch to scoot by the other center back, Leandro González Pirez. 

Poku spots Pinho open on the left flank and waits until the final second to lay it off to him, completely drawing Walkes out of position in the process. Pinho now has a bevy of time and space to make his next calculated decision.

Pinho takes one touch to bring the ball into the box. As Walkes recovers quickly and lunges to block what is usually a left-footed Pinho shot, the Brazilian incisively cuts inside and brings the ball onto his right foot. With a clear shot at goal, Pinho curls his effort into the top right corner past the outstretched arms of Atlanta goalkeeper Alec Kann. 

The rest is history. Poku's monumental last-minute goal will be featured on Anatomy of a Goal later this year. Keep tuning in to catch more breakdowns!