How did Gregg Berhalter fare against Tata Martino in MLS matches?

With the US national team playing Mexico in Sunday's Concacaf Gold Cup Final (9 pm ET | FS1, Univision, UDN), it's only logical to look to US coach Gregg Berhalter's coaching record against Mexico boss Tata Martino, in five very recent meetings in MLS regular and postseason play?

The bad news for the US? Martino holds a clear edge. The good news? Hector Villalba won't be playing, and Zack Steffen will.

Martino's Atlanta United squads were 4-0-1 in five meetings against Gregg Berhalter's Columbus Crew SC sides in 2017 and 2018. Villalba scored in every single Atlanta win in that span, those five goals amount for more than 20 percent of his total MLS production since his arrival in 2017. Steffen was the hero on Columbus' best result, which just happened to come in the 2017 MLS Cup Playoffs Knockout Round.

Here's how each of those matches unfolded:

Atlanta United 3, Columbus Crew SC 1

June 17, 2017

After early goals from Villalba and Federico Higuain canceled each other out, Miguel Almiron scored one of his better goals in MLS midway through the second half before Josef Martinez iced the game late. Of note, all three Atlanta goals resulted directly from Columbus turnovers, including two in their own end.

Columbus Crew SC 0, Atlanta United 2

July 1, 2017

Villalba scored a goal in each half for Atlanta, which preserved a shutout despite only completing 71 percent of their passes and holding 42 percent of the possession. It was the Argentine winger's second, and to date, last brace in MLS.

Atlanta United 0 (1), Columbus Crew SC 0 (3)

October 26, 2017

Steffen saved two penalties, Adam Jahn converted the deciding spot kick and Columbus silenced the home crowd in the first-ever postseason match played at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, a 2017 Knockout Round encounter. Steffen made eight saves prior to penalties, while Almiron struck the crossbar early in the first half from distance and Martinez's one-timer in the second half struck the post.

Columbus Crew SC 0, Atlanta United 2

June 13, 2018

Shortly after Jonathan Mensah flashed a set piece header wide, Martinez made Columbus pay with a brave corner kick header on the other end. Villalba popped up again on the counter to put the game away late.

Atlanta United 3, Columbus Crew SC 1

August 19, 2018

A red-hot Martinez tied the MLS single-season record to open the season with his 27th, on his way to eventually posting a record 31 for the season. After Gyasi Zardes leveled from outside the penalty area, Villalba appeared not to get the memo, putting away a sensational individual goal while resisting a layoff to his teammate for a simpler, record-breaking finish. Martinez set up Almiron for a late third.


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