After breaking in their new home just days ago with a 3-0 victory, Atlanta United are set to hit the field once again Wednesday night against the New England Revolution for the first meeting between the two clubs. Atlanta (11-8-6) are hoping to continue a seven-match unbeaten streak in the ATL, while New England (10-12-5), look to insert themselves into the playoff conversation as the end of the regular season approaches.
The match is set to kick off at 7:00 p.m. EST and will be broadcast on FOX Sports South or via FOX Sports Go.
Atlanta United (11-8-6)
After losing two of their first three MLS home games, Atlanta is now unbeaten in their last seven – outscoring the opposition 19-6 over that time – and have only dropped one match in their last nine regular season matches. Sitting in sixth place in the Eastern Conference standings with a few games in hand on the rest of the league and a hefty home stretch to finish the season, Atlanta United have set themselves up nicely to make a run at the MLS Cup Playoffs. With an atmosphere like Sunday’s match, Mercedes-Benz Stadium will prove to be one of the toughest places to play for Atlanta’s opposition.
Head coach Tata Martino has his side playing an attractive, attacking, fast-paced game which has tallied a total of 47 goals through 25 matches. Spearheading the impressive number are 23-year-old Argentine Tito Villalba and 24-year-old Venezuelan Josef Martinez who have both recorded 10 of their own on the year. Close behind him and constantly pulling the strings of the attack is the crafty Paraguayan maestro, Miguel Almirón, who’s netted eight goals and notched 11 assists so far this season.
The attack has caught the attention of most, but it’s the team’s impressive effort on the other side of the ball that has flown under the radar, with their 32 goals this season ranking third best in the league. Led by U.S. international goalkeeper Brad Guzan and team captain Michael Parkhurst, Atlanta will look to build on their clean sheet against Dallas on Sunday and keep New England scoreless in their midweek matchup.
New England Revolution (10-12-5)
Despite an impressive home record (10-2-2), the Revolution have yet to earn a victory on the road this season through 13 matches (0-10-3). The northeastern club has won its last two competitions, but both of those came inside the friendly walls of Gillette Stadium. Wednesday will be quite the contrary as they’ll be playing in front of a crowd of 45,000+ raving Atlantans inside the new, energized Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
At the helm of New England’s attack is U.S. international Lee Nguyen, one of the most productive MLS midfielders ever to hit the field with 51 goals and 52 assists all-time. Nguyen hasn’t slowed down in 2017 as his vision and cleverness have already earned him nine goals and 14 assists this year. In front of Nguyen lie one of the most lethal duos in the league in Kei Kamara and Juan Agudelo, who combined for 19 goals so far this season. With both posing physical, aerial threats, Atlanta will have their hands full with the Revolution front line.
Still just outside the playoff line at the moment, New England is looking to string a few wins together in hopes that they will sneak into the playoff picture come Decision Day – the last day of matches of the MLS regular season. Spoiling Atlanta United’s homecoming week and breaking their own winless streak on the road Wednesday night would get them another step closer to reaching the MLS Cup Playoffs.
- FOX Sports South
- FOX Sports GO