Atlanta United Academy players are all over the world improving an already-bright future for Atlanta United. Here’s what you may have missed in October so far:
U.S. U-17’s advance to World Cup knockout stages
Atlanta United is well-represent on the U.S. U-17 Youth National Team as they fight for the biggest prize in the age group at the FIFA U-17 World Cup in India. In the team’s three group stage matches, goalkeeper Justin Garces, midfielder Chris Goslin and forward Andrew Carleton were featured in the starting XI. Garces secured two clean sheets as the U.S. won two and lost one game to finish in third place and advance to the knockout stages. Goslin was solid all tournament, anchoring the midfield in an impressive defensive display while adding an assist on top of that. And Carleton contributed his usual magic up top, assisting one goal and scoring one of his one over the course of the group stage.
The U.S. team will now wait to find out their next opponent of the knockout rounds, which begin next week.
More red, black and gold in India
The U.S. team isn’t the only one benefitting from Atlanta United academy players at the U-17 World Cup. Midfielder Alessandro Castro and defender Alex Bahr are both suiting up for Honduras in the tournament, with each getting a start so far. It’s been a mixed bag so far; Honduras fell to a heavy defeat in their first match against Japan, but followed that up with a 5-0 win over New Caledonia in the second match. They will fight for their tournament lives on Saturday as they face group leaders France with a place in the knockout rounds on the line.
Generation Adidas Cup
Major League Soccer’s premier youth cup tournament is underway, with Atlanta United travelling to Pennsylvania for qualifying rounds of the 2018 Generation Adidas Cup. The U-17’s, which topped their qualifying group last year, started off with a disappointing loss to hosts Philadelphia Union. But they bounced back with a 5-2 win over DC United and a 2-1 victor New York City FC to head home with a solid six points from their first three matches. Jackson Conway continued his hot goalscoring form with 4 total goals over those two wins, and Deedson Vixamar – in just his second match with the academy – added a hat trick in the win over D.C.
This year’s tournament sees the introduction of the U-15’s age group, and the younger Atlanta United side had a respectable showing of their own against the same competition. All three of their matches ended level after full time, but the tournament allows tied results to go to penalty kicks to earn a second point for the draw. Despite an impressive performance for Atlanta United goalkeeper Vicente Reyes, the squad dropped two penalty shootouts to leave the weekend with four points to their name. Both age groups will face the New England Revolution, the New York Red Bulls and Orlando City in the next qualifying round in February, with the top two seeds advancing to the Championship division in April.
Dominant weekend in Marietta
Finally, Atlanta United hosted local academy Concorde Fire at the Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta Training Ground in Atlanta, and went an impressive 6-0-0 across all age groups over the course of the weekend. The U-13’s Ty Wilson and U-15’s Joseph Collins each had multi-goal games in a great weekend for the ATL, with the final goal differential ending at 16-1.