Atlanta United are coming off a disappointing end to one of the best regular seasons the league has ever seen, equaling the previous all-time points record with 69 on the season but finishing just short of claiming the Supporters’ Shield. However, there’s still an opportunity to make the season worthy of a trophy with the MLS Cup Playoffs now upon us.
As the No. 2 seed in the East, Atlanta’s first match will come on Sunday, November 4th where they will travel for the first leg of the Eastern Conference Semifinal. But who will they face in their first postseason test? We broke it down.
To lay the groundwork, the top six teams from each conference qualify for the MLS Cup Playoffs (East & West). In the East, No. 1 seeded New York Red Bulls and No. 2 seeded Atlanta United each earn a bye in the opening single-elimination knockout round. The four other teams that will participate in the opening round include: New York City FC (#3), D.C. United (#4), Columbus Crew (#5) and Philadelphia Union (#6).
On Wednesday night, #3 NYCFC hosts #6 Philadelphia Union at 7:00 p.m. EST on FS1, then on Thursday, #4 D.C. United plays host to #5 Columbus Crew at 8:00 p.m. EST on FS1. Following the results of the two matches, No. 1 seeded New York Red Bulls will play the lowest seeded team remaining, while No. 2 Atlanta United will play the highest seed remaining. Below are the possible scenarios for the Eastern Conference Semifinal matchups:
If #3 New York City FC defeats #6 Philadelphia Union:
- #2 Atlanta United will face #3 New York City FC
- #1 New York Red Bulls will face the winner of #4 D.C. United and #5 Columbus Crew
If #6 Philadelphia defeats #3 New York City FC:
- #1 New York Red Bulls will face #6 Philadelphia Union
- #2 Atlanta United will face the winner of #4 D.C. United and #5 Columbus Crew
The first leg of the Eastern Conference Semifinals will take place this Sunday, November 4th with the second leg occurring a week later on Sunday, November 11th. Details regarding kickoff times and broadcast partners will be announced following the knockout round midweek.
Keep up to date with everything regarding Atlanta United’s playoff run including tickets, news and more at atlutd.com/playoffs.