Minnesota United put an end to the Seattle Sounders' MLS-record 13-game unbeaten run to start the season, taking a 1-0 victory at Allianz Field on Sunday on the strength of a late game-winner from Robin Lod.
HIGHLIGHTS: Minnesota United FC vs. Seattle Sounders FC | July 18, 2021
The match was scoreless all the way until the 81st minute, when Lod got free in front of goal for a tap-in finish off a cross from Niko Hansen, delivering the Loons all three points and dealing Seattle their first defeat of the season.
The Loons controlled most of the possession in the first half, but found their best opportunities off a pair of set pieces. The first was a dangerous free kick off the foot of Emanuel Reynoso, which he nearly put into the top corner but which sailed high by a matter of inches. The next came off a Franco Fragapane corner kick that was flicked on by Bakaye Dibassy to Reynoso at the far post, but the Argentine couldn't quite get his head to it.
Seattle had a couple of chances of their own before the halftime whistle, though Raul Ruidiaz and Jimmy Medranda each had good-looking opportunities denied by Minnesota goalkeeper Tyler Miller.
The Sounders thought they had a second-half opener in the 75th minute off a Joao Paulo free kick that was headed home by Xavier Arreaga. The goal would be waved off, though, as the Ecuadorian center back was a half-step offside on the delivery. AB Cissoko also nearly deflected in an earlier corner kick for Seattle just after second-half kickoff, but he had the look cleared off the line.
Minnesota thought they had a penalty kick shout right before the goal in the 80th minute, when Lod got behind the backline and argued that he was pulled down by a defender in the Seattle area. The PK wasn't awarded, but it turned out to be a moot point, as the Finnish attacker got the close-range winner off the service from Hansen the very next minute to send the hosts to victory.
- 81' - MIN - Robin Lod | WATCH
- THE BIG PICTURE: It was both a cathartic and historic victory for the Loons, who have now topped Seattle for the first time as an MLS club and exacted a little revenge for their defeat at the hands of the Sounders in the MLS Cup Playoffs last year and in the opening game of the league campaign this season back in April. The unbeaten run was bound to end at some point for Seattle, who were heavily shorthanded due to a lengthy injury report and international absences. Still, they'll be disappointed to see it end in that fashion, as they were just nine minutes plus stoppage time from extending it to 14 before the dam finally broke.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: It was still anyone's game until Lod found the tally that gave his team the win and sent the home crowd at Allianz into bedlam.
GOAL: Robin Lod, Minnesota United FC - 81st minute
- MAN OF THE MATCH: Tyler Miller came through with some clutch saves to help his defense withstand a clean sheet and take the victory against his former team.
- MIN: Saturday, July 24 vs. Portland Timbers | 8 pm ET (MLS LIVE on ESPN+)
- SEA: Thursday, July 22 at Austin FC | 9:30 pm ET (ESPN, ESPN Deportes)