The match ultimately served as a preview for an Eastern Conference first-round clash in the Audi 2019 MLS Cup Playoffs. The defending MLS Cup champions will be the No. 2 seed and the Revs will be the No. 7 seed in their return to the postseason for the first time since 2015.
Gressel’s star showing began in the 3rd minute, as his low cross set up a one-time finish for Darlington Nagbe to make it 1-0. The Revs equalized in the 8th minute via a Cristian Penilla breakaway, but then the 2017 MLS Rookie of the Year found another gear.
To cap off his masterclass, Gressel smashed home a thunderous strike in the 57th minute. From 16 yards out, he volleyed home a right-footed effort into the bottom corner, capping the 3-1 result.
New England nearly rallied back late, but Juan Fernando Caicedo’s close-range shot rifled off the crossbar and out of play.
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- 3' – ATL – Darlington Nagbe | WATCH
- 8' – NE – Cristian Penilla | WATCH
- 49' – ATL – Josef Martinez | WATCH
- 57' – ATL – Julian Gressel | WATCH
MOMENT OF THE MATCH:
, upon entering as a substitute in the 79th minute, received a standing ovation from the Mercedes-Benz Stadium crowd. It served as a final regular-season appearance for the 35-year-old. Parkhurst, Atlanta’s first MLS captain, has endeared himself at every stop of his long, storied career.
- Atlanta: Oct. 19 vs. New England, 3 pm ET (Univision, TUDN) | Round One, Audi 2019 MLS Cup Playoffs
- New England: Oct. 19 at Atlanta, 3 pm ET (Univision, TUDN) | Round One, Audi 2019 MLS Cup Playoffs