Atlanta United is ramping up for its much-anticipated 2018 home debut this weekend at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. With more than 70,000 fans decked out in red, black and gold expected for the match, it will be a spectacle in the stands for certain. But going off last year’s performances, it’s fair to say it will be a spectacle on the field as well. Here, in chronological order, are the most memorable moments at Mercedes-Benz Stadium thus far.
The First Goal
The first time the Five Stripes crowd roared on a goal is something fans will remember. Leandro González Pirez made history by sliding in at the back post to guide home the first goal in a 3-0 win over FC Dallas in the first match at the stadium.
The Touchdown over New England
Josef Martinez started his record-breaking scoring week with a hat trick against New England, kicking it off in the first two minutes with a stunning near-post finish. That wasn’t all, with the red, black and gold racking up 7 goals in a record-breaking performance: it tied the record for the largest margin of victory in MLS history, and was the first time a team had been held to 0 total shots in a game.
The First Record Smashed
The Atlanta United fans were the biggest story in MLS in 2017, smashing almost every attendance record on the books. The first one was a memorable one, when more than 70,000 fans packed into Mercedes-Benz Stadium for the first time. And they were treated to a goal-feast, with Josef Martinez’s hat trick the headline of a 3-3 thriller against Orlando City.
The Best Goal
The match against the Montreal Impact had a lot riding on it, with both teams fighting for playoff qualification. And it could’ve gone downhill when Miguel Almirón left the match early with a hamstring injury. But Tito Villalba stepped up when the team needed him, sending a missile from distance into the top corner for the unstoppable match-winner.
Uncle Arthur’s Birthday Present
With the Five Stripes just one win from playoff qualification, the sea of red, black and gold was as pumped up as ever. That extra energy helped propel Atlanta United to a 3-0 victory that clinched their spot in the postseason, complete with a massive birthday celebration after the final whistle for Uncle Arthur – the man who started it all.
The memories don’t stop there, with plenty more to come for the Five Stripes faithful. Make sure you’re there to kick off the next chapter against D.C. United on March 11th by getting your tickets here.