Calvo All-Star Game

Beyond the Box: Loons Make Minnesota Proud at All-Star Game


Before he left for the MLS All-Star Game, Minnesota United defender Francisco Calvo said he would not quell his attacking instincts should he see the opportunity to go forward, saying, “If I have the opportunity to score it could be awesome.”

While Calvo did not find the score sheet in his 33 minutes in Atlanta, he did find a chance to join the attack on the play that resulted in the All-Stars' only goal against seven-time defending Italian champion Juventus.

Calvo got the start at left back from Head Coach Tata Martino, putting the Costa Rican in a wide position similar to the one he plays in Minnesota’s 3-5-2. Since the formation switch, Calvo has three assists in five starts for the Loons in part because playing out wide gives him the freedom to make runs up the field and into space — which he did on Atlanta forward Josef Martinez’s goal.

Just prior to the game-tying header, Calvo made a darting run into space in the box and was in position for the volley that LAFC forward Carlos Vela took that helped set up the goal.


Juventus goalkeeper Mattia Perin was already well aware of what MLS goalkeepers have come to know: Stay on your line if MNUFC forward Darwin Quintero is near.

With the All-Star Game tied, 1-1, in the 84th minute, Quintero tried one of his signature chipped efforts, but Perin must have seen the tape on the Colombian Designated Player because he was ready and waiting on his line to make the save.

"I think we came out respecting Juventus, but with the intention of doing them damage," Quintero said. "I’m happy. It was enjoyed to the fullest. We tried, as in any competition, to win. That's what ["Tata" Martino] said, that we were representing MLS so we needed to go out and win the game. Everyone enjoyed it in their own way."

Quintero — who was a late addition to the All-Star roster — was arguably the MLS side’s most dangerous attacking player after coming on in the 62nd minute, finishing with two shots and one chance on target. He also drew a trio of fouls, including one in the 88th minute on a dribble just outside of the penalty area that gave Orlando midfielder Yoshimar Yotun a threatening free kick opportunity in the closing minutes.