Atlanta United heads back on the road for a critical matchup against Inter Miami CF. Both teams are battling for a playoff berth and three points on Wednesday night would provide a big boost to the 5-Stripes chances. The match kicks off at 8pm ET on Fox Sports Southeast. Let’s take a look at the Tools to the Match presented by The Home Depot.
Utilize Speed on the Flanks
Atlanta United is looking for its first win against Inter Miami CF this season. One of the keys will be to utilize the speed on the flanks that Atlanta’s attack can bring. Jürgen Damm provides that speed on the right flank. The Mexican winger is creating 1.74 chances per 90 in the limited minutes he has played this season. Jon Gallagher continues to provide a threat with his speed, either through the middle or down the left flank. The Irish attacker found great success down the left when the 5-Stripes traveled to Miami the last time, beating his defender off the dribble and creating several opportunities including a penalty kick. Other players like Jake Mulraney, Brooks Lennon or Manuel Castro give interim head coach Stephen Glass options to continue to utilize that speed on the flanks and cause havoc in Miami’s defense.
Stop Miami’s New Look Attack
Miami has made some mid-season acquisitions to bolster the team’s attack. Most notably in the signing of Argentine international Gonzalo Higuain. The former Juventus striker played in Europe for several years at different top clubs. He has one goal and one assist since joining Miami a few weeks ago. Another key player to shutdown for Atlanta will be Lewis Morgan. The winger leads Miami in created chances (44) and scored twice against the 5-Stripes already this year. French World Cup winner Blaise Matuidi is another mid-season acquisition that Miami is counting on to help the team reach the postseason.
First Goals are Critical
In the tight playoff race that Atlanta United finds itself in right now, first goals are critical to lift the team’s confidence. When Atlanta has scored the first goal this season, the team is 5-0-0. When the 5-Stripes hold a halftime lead, the team is 4-0-0. Coming out on the front foot and scoring that first goal would go a long way to securing a crucial victory in this match. With six matches left in the regular season, matches like this one on Wednesday are “six-pointers” in the race for one of the 10 Eastern Conference playoff spots.
Tune in to the match on Wednesday night on Fox Sports Southeast when Atlanta United travels to Inter Miami CF at 8pm ET.