Matchday

Nashville SC defeat Moca FC in Concacaf Champions Cup debut

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The Hany Mukhtar-Sam Surridge duo shined briefly but brightly for Nashville SC in Thursday night's 3-0 Concacaf Champions Cup debut win at Moca FC.

Both Designated Players had a goal and an assist by the time Mukhtar left the game (without medical assistance) in the 35th minute for Jacob Shaffelburg. Surridge also exited the match early, although his making way for Teal Bunbury in the 53rd minute raised more concerns, since the English striker appeared to be in physical pain.

Offseason signing Tyler Boyd opened his account in his official Nashville debut, icing the match 15 minutes from time.

Gary Smith's side now takes an away-three goal advantage into the Feb. 28 return leg at GEODIS Park. The winner advances to the Round of 16 to faceĀ Inter Miami CF, possibly arranging a rematch of the 2023 Leagues Cup Final.

More short-term, Nashville will host the New York Red Bulls on Feb. 25 in their MLS regular-season opener (5 pm ET | MLS Season Pass).

Goals

  • 12' - NSH - Hany Mukhtar | WATCH
  • 25' - NSH - Sam Surridge | WATCH
  • 75' - NSH - Tyler Boyd | WATCH

Three Things

  • THE BIG PICTURE: It was just over a half hour, but Mukhtar and Surridge clicked from the start at the Estadio Cibao. The DPs scored and assisted the other, looking every bit like the partnership that showed promise for Nashville last season.
  • MOMENT OF THE MATCH: Now in his fifth year with Nashville, Mukhtar set the tone for 2024 with his 12th-minute goal. But if Surridge's exit is more than a precautionary measure, there's a new choice.
  • MAN OF THE MATCH: Even in limited minutes, Mukhtar is a game-changer. The 2022 MLS MVP scored a vintage goal, assisted Surridge with a line-splitting pass and was missed by Nashville once he left the game.

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