ATL UTD 2 new head coach Stephen Glass sat down with ATLUTD.com to discuss his philosophy and goals for his squad in the upcoming season.
What are you most excited about for the upcoming 2019 season?
The chance to put together and work with a team that’s going to represent Atlanta United. It feels like a new start, there is a new head coach in for the first team, a new head coach for ATL UTD 2 and a number of new players that are going to play at a new stadium.
How will your extensive playing career at the high level help you manage ATL UTD 2?
Although it doesn’t always translate from being a good player to be a good coach, I think I’ve been away and have done my homework in terms of coaching licenses. My background is good in that respect. Being a former player means that I know what the guys are going through. All of the players who come to play for ATL UTD 2, I know what their mindset is and what the potential pitfalls may be. I am ready to help every one of them achieve what they want to achieve.
What does success look like for your first year as head coach of ATL UTD 2?
To manage the group properly. It will change from week to week, but the biggest thing is when people watch this team, they see an Atlanta United team. For me, the real success will be making this group look and feel like an Atlanta United team. ATL UTD 2 is an extension of the first team and a representation of the city of Atlanta, so it’s important that fans want to come watch and think that’s an Atlanta United team.
How will you prepare the ATL UTD 2 players for potential call ups to the first team?
Things will change from day to day. Any players that get the opportunity to go up with the first team, I’ve got to make sure that they are ready for it. ATL UTD 2 is a place where they can show that they deserve a chance. The game has got a way of finding the correct opportunities for people. If the first team travels extra bodies, it creates opportunities for younger players in the academy, it creates more minutes for the guys that need experience and anytime there is moving parts, opportunities are being created for someone. The environment that we will create as a staff is for players to strive and be the best they can be.
What are some of the matches you have circled on the calendar this year?
I want to get them rolling from the start of the season to the last competitive game, making the best out of the group of players I have on any given time. I am really looking forward to playing at home. I believe the atmosphere is going to be good. It’s important when the players are playing at Kennesaw and the fans are all wanting the same as the team, that’s powerful. I am not to concern with how other teams play or do things, I am more concerned about how we do things, that’s what my focus is.
What are some key areas in which you will prepare for the first match of the season?
Being organized and knowing what everyone’s roles and responsibilities are in the style we are going to play in. Our focus is what we do, and can we do it well, as long as we look after our business we will be fine.
Is there anything you’d like the fans to know about you? Hobbies etc.?
As you get deeper into the coaching business there is less time for hobbies. I am not sure if you can consider it a hobby or not, but I spend as must time with my wife as I can. We enjoy exploring the city of Atlanta and hanging out with friends. For the fans, come and watch us if you like what you see keep coming back. I believe they are going to like what they see and enjoy the atmosphere at Kennesaw State.
ATL UTD 2’s continues the preseason at the Training Ground. The team will play four preseason matches against Clemson University, Tormenta FC, Chattanooga Red Wolves SC and Charlotte Independence.
ATL UTD 2 kicks off its second season in its new home of Fifth Third Bank Stadium in Kennesaw, Georgia on March 9 against USL Championship expansion team Hartford Athletic at 7:30 p.m. EST.