MLS All-Stars vs Juventus: 2018 MLS All-Star Game Preview and Prediction

2018 MLS All-Star Game: MLS All-Stars vs Juventus

Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Atlanta – Wednesday, August 1st 2018 – 19:30 ET (00:30 BST)

UK TV Coverage: Live on Sky Sports Main Event

MLS All-Stars vs Juventus: Preview

The best in MLS will take on Italy’s finest club side in the 2018 MLS All-Star Game in Atlanta on Wednesday. This will be the 23rd annual All-Star game and could break the attendance record with a full house expected at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. The current All-Star attendance record is 70,728, set back in 2010 when fans packed into Houston’s Reliant Stadium to watch the MLS All-Stars take on Manchester United.

The MLS All-Stars are looking to win the game for the first time in three years after losing on penalties to Real Madrid this time last year. Prior to that, they fell 2-1 to Arsenal. The All-Stars last won the game in 2015, beating Spurs 2-1 at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.

This year’s All-Star team is stacked with attacking talent, even after Zlatan Ibrahimovic and David Villa have had to pull out. The likes of Atlanta’s own Josef Martinez, Miguel Almiron and Ezequiel Barco will look to link up with fellow attackers Carlos Vela, Bradley Wright-Phillips and former Juventus star Sebastian Giovinco.

Head coach Tata Martino will set his side up to attack Juventus – a team renowned for their defensive prowess The Bianconeri have added a monumental attacking threat of their own this summer in Cristiano Ronaldo but the 33-year-old will not be ready to make his debut on Wednesday.

Juve are busy preparing for the 2018/19 Serie A season as they will look to retain their league title for the eighth successive year. They are also the reigning Coppa Italia champions and only the second Serie A side to ever take on the All-Stars, following AS Roma in 2013 – a game the All-Stars lost 3-1.

This will be the third of four Juventus preseason games in the United States. They have played two of their three International Champions Cup matches, beating Bayern Munich 2-0 before drawing 1-1 with Benfica, a game they won 4-2 on penalties. They will round off their ICC games when they face Real Madrid on Saturday but all focus is on the All-Star game ahead of that.

Ibrahimovic pulled out of the All-Star game on Sunday night after scoring his first hat-trick for LA Galaxy. That was as a result of playing three matches in a week. David Villa also misses out with injury. Minnesota United’s Darwin Quintero and New York Red Bulls’ Tyler Adams are the replacements.

MLS All-Stars vs Juventus: Team News

MLS All-Stars

Position 2018 MLS All-Star Squad
Goalkeepers Brad Guzan (Atlanta United), Zack Steffen (Columbus Crew)
Defenders Francisco Calvo (Minnesota United), Laurent Ciman (LAFC), Matt Hedges (FC Dallas), Aaron Long (New York Red Bulls), Michael Murillo (New York Red Bulls), Michael Parkhurst (Atlanta United), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)
Midfielders Tyler Adams (New York Red Bulls), Miguel Almiron (Atlanta United), Ezequiel Barco (Atlanta United), Alphonso Davies (Vancouver Whitecaps FC), Jonathan Dos Santos (LA Galaxy), Alberth Elis (Houston Dynamo), Ignacio Piatti (Montreal Impact), Alexander Ring (New York City FC), Ilie Sanchez (Sporting Kansas City), Diego Valeri (Portland Timbers), Yoshimar Yotún (Orlando City SC), Wilfried Zahibo (New England Revolution)
Forwards Giovani Dos Santos (LA Galaxy), Sebastian Giovinco (Toronto FC), Josef Martinez (Atlanta United), Darwin Quintero (Minnesota United), Carlos Vela (LAFC), Bradley Wright-Phillips (New York Red Bulls)Juventus

Juventus

Position 2018 Juventus Preseason Squad
Goalkeepers Wojciech Szczesny, Mattia Perin, Carlo Pinsoglio, Mattia Del Favero
Defenders Mattia De Sciglio, Giorgio Chiellini, Mehdi Benatia, Alex Sandro, Mattia Caldara, Andrea Barzagli, Joao Cancelo, Daniele Rugani, Pietro Beruatto, Roman Macek, Grigoris Kastanos
Midfielders Miralem Pjanic, Sami Khedira, Claudio Marchisio, Emre Can, Leandro Fernandes, Matheus Pereira da Silva, Alessandro Di Pardo, Nicolo Fagioli
Forwards Federico Bernardeschi, Luca Clemenza, Stefano Beltrame, Andrea Favilli

MLS All-Stars vs Juventus: Key Stats

MLS All-Stars’ last five: L/L/W/L/D

Juventus’ preseason form: W/D

Key stat: Both sides have scored in each of the past six MLS All-Star games. There have been 29 goals scored in the past eight editions of the match – an average of 3.6 per game.

MLS All-Stars vs Juventus: Prediction

MLS All-Stars 3-2 Juventus: This has all the makings of being a spectacle. The All-Stars have an abundance of attacking talent and will have to set up to attack the Italian giants. However, that could lead to an open game and Juventus have more than enough weapons themselves to unleash. Either way, this should be full of goals and we think the All-Stars have enough to edge it. Don’t be surprised to see former Juve man Giovinco score the decisive goal…

Advertisements

In pictures: Atlanta United forced to settle for a point in 1-1 draw with Seattle Sounders

Atlanta United couldn’t reward their record crowd of 72,243 with a win, as Seattle Sounders battled to earn a 1-1 draw at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Sunday night.

Atlanta will rue missed opportunities in what was a fiery contest between the two sides. The Sounders will be happy with the road point as they look to build some momentum ahead of their traditional late-season surge towards the playoffs.

It was the visitors who took the lead, right on the stroke of half-time. Harry Shipp’s shot was blocked by Franco Escobar but after going to Video Review, referee Baldomero Toledo pointed to the penalty spot.

Nicolas Lodeiro converted and Seattle went into half-time 1-0 up. But it wouldn’t stay that way for very long. Atlanta United came out fighting in the second-half and got the equaliser in the 48th minute.

Josef Martinez was able to beat Kim Kee-Hee to Julian Gressel’s floated cross and steered his header over Stefan Frei. But that was the last time Atlanta were able to get the better of the Sounders goalkeeper.

Frei came up big to keep the score at 1-1 and earned his side a valuable point. Seattle had to play the final half an hour with ten men after Jordan McCrary was sent off, but Atlanta couldn’t capitalise.

Check out exclusive photos from Sunday’s game below, courtesy of MLSGB photographer, Denise McCooey:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Atlanta United vs New York City FC | 2018 MLS Preview and Prediction

Major League Soccer: Atlanta United vs New York City FC

Mercedes-Benz Stadium – Sunday, April 15 2018 – 18:00 ET (23:00 BST)

UK TV Coverage: Live on Sky Sports Football

Atlanta United vs NYCFC: Preview

Atlanta United welcome New York City FC to Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Sunday night in what promises to be a thrilling battle between two of the league’s top sides.

The Five Stripes are arguably the most dangerous team in Major League Soccer right now. Yes, they’re four points off Supporters’ Shield leaders NYCFC. But they have won four in a row, scoring 13 and conceding just two.

Tata Martino’s side have put that opening day drubbing at Houston behind them and now look like they can beat anyone. Their 5-0 thrashing of LAFC last week further highlighted how dangerous they are, especially on the break. They scored four of the five goals in the final 23 minutes last week. NYCFC know they mustn’t commit too many bodies forward, at risk of being countered.

If Atlanta aren’t the hottest team in MLS, then it’s surely NYCFC. The visitors are unbeaten and have picked up 16 points from a possible 18 to start the season. They put in what was probably their best display when they beat Real Salt Lake 4-0 on Wednesday night, so they’ll arrive at Atlanta in high spirits.

Patrick Vieira’s men will welcome the stiff test Atlanta are sure to offer. But they boast a dangerous attack of their own, having scored twice in each of their three road games so far this season.

This will be the third meeting between the two sides. Both previous games ended 3-1 to the home side, and goals are expected again here.

Atlanta United vs NYCFC: Team News

Atlanta United

❌ Suspensions: None.

❓ Doubts: None.

🚑 Out: Ezequiel Barco (quad strain), Franco Escobar (head injury), Jose Hernandez (quad strain), Mitch Hildebrandt (knee sprain), Greg Garza (right shoulder).

New York City FC

❌ Suspensions: None.

❓ Doubts: David Villa (lower body), Alex Ring (knee).

🚑 Out: Kwame Awuah (knee).

Atlanta United vs NYCFC: Key Stats

Atlanta United’s MLS form: N/A

New York City FC’s MLS form: N/A

Key stat: New York City FC have scored at least two goals in each of their past seven MLS games.

Atlanta United vs NYCFC: Prediction

Atlanta United 2-2 New York City FC: Goals are expected again at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, as is always the case. NYCFC have yet to lose and will be desperate to avoid ending that streak here. They will likely set up to frustrate the hosts and break on the counter. This one should be intriguing but ultimately, it could end all square.

Atlanta United vs LAFC | 2018 MLS Preview and Prediction

Major League Soccer: Atlanta United vs LAFC

Mercedes-Benz Stadium – Saturday, April 7th 2018 – 17:00 ET (22:00 BST)

UK TV Coverage: Live on Sky Sports Football

Atlanta United vs LAFC: Preview

Atlanta United take on LAFC on Saturday evening in what is surely of the most anticipated fixtures of the season. They are two of the most attacking sides in the league and will go head-to-head in front of a sell-out crowd at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in their first ever meeting.

Atlanta have bounced back from a shock 4-0 opening day defeat at Houston by winning three-straight games. They now sit third in the Eastern Conference and are looking set to challenge at the very top of the standings this season.

Last weekend’s 1-0 win at Minnesota showed a different side to Atlanta. They are known for blowing teams away with their skillful play and attacking intent. But Leandro Gonzalez Pirez was sent off after 38 minutes, so Atlanta had to dig deep to hold onto their 1-0 lead for almost an hour.

LAFC could have done with some of that defensive quality after leading 3-0 away at LA Galaxy in the first Los Angeles derby between the new rivals. But inexperience and the introduction of Zlatan Ibrahimovic saw LAFC concede four goals in 30 minutes to suffer their first MLS defeat.

They looked well on track to keep their 100% record intact after leading 3-0 but Bob Bradley will undoubtedly be concerned with the way his team fell apart, especially in a game of that magnitude.

LAFC have the chance to bounce back in another showcase game here, but that will be a real tough task. The Five Stripes have scored seven goals in their two home games so far this season and will be looking to exploit the LAFC defence after last week’s collapse.

Atlanta United vs LAFC: Team News

Atlanta United

❌ Suspensions: Leandro Gonzalez Pirez (red card).

❓ Doubts: Jeff Larentowicz (ankle).

🚑 Out: Ezequiel Barco (quad strain), Franco Escobar (head), Jose Hernandez (quad strain), Mitch Hildebrandt (left knee), Andrew Carleton (upper respiratory infection).

LAFC

❌ Suspensions: None.

❓ Doubts: None.

🚑 Out: Luis Lopez (right leg fracture), Omar Gaber (right knee sprain).

Atlanta United vs LAFC: Key Stats

Atlanta United’s MLS form: L/W/W/W

Los Angeles FC’s MLS form: W/W/L

Key stat: Atlanta United have scored at least two goals in each of their past ten regular season games at home. They have still never failed to score at home in a regular season game.

Atlanta United vs LAFC: Prediction

Atlanta United 4-3 LAFC: Goals, goals, goals. These two sides love to attack and will surely set up to try and outscore each other. If either side can get on the scoresheet early, it will open the game up, so expect this one to be one of the games of the weekend. LAFC’s collapse at the Galaxy last week showed they are vulnerable when the pressure ramps up and the atmosphere in Atlanta should give the home side a slight edge.

MLS Attacking Player of the Week: Week 3 – Atlanta United star runs riot in big win

For every week of the 2018 MLS season, MLSGB will award two Player of the Week accolades to the previous gameweek’s standout performers. We will highlight one star attacking player, as well as the leading defensive performer from the last round of fixtures. The Attacking Player of the Week award can be won by strikers, wingers and advanced midfielders. While the Defensive Player of the Week award can be won by goalkeepers, defenders and defensive midfielders.

We’re three weeks into the 2018 MLS season and there is already an early frontrunner in the Golden Boot race. Atlanta United’s Josef Martinez tops the scoring charts after netting a hat-trick in Saturday’s 4-1 win over Vancouver and as a result, he is this week’s MLSGB Attacking Player of the Week. The Venezuelan striker is only 23 games into his MLS career but he has already scored four hat-tricks. Incredibly, he is just one hat-trick shy of matching the all-time league record, currently held by Stern John.

Martinez showcased why he is so lethal, in more ways than one, on Saturday evening. His first goal came from the penalty spot, after Kendall Waston was sent off for an apparent elbow following a long VAR decision just 13 minutes into the game. Then in the second-half, the Atlanta striker raced away on a counter-attack at blistering pace and finished cooly to add his second of the night. His hat-trick came in the 88th minute as he rose high to head home Andrew Carleton’s cross, rounding off an excellent display for The Five Stripes.

Martinez scored his hat-trick off the back of five total shots, while also creating one chance for a teammate. He completed 29 of his 34 of his passes on the night and will be hoping to build on his performance when Atlanta return to action away at Minnesota United in two weeks.

Martinez has now scored 23 MLS goals in 23 games, an astonishing record for a player that had never previously scored more than eight league goals in a season before 2017. He is thriving under Tata Martino’s guidance in Atlanta and is a lethal focal point for one of the league’s most dynamic attacking forces.

You can see a full statistical breakdown of his performance against Vancouver below, which highlights just how much of the field he likes to cover. He looks to drag defenders out of position by coming deep to collect the ball at times, which makes him virtually impossible to man-mark. His explosive pace on the break means Atlanta always have an outlet when defending set-pieces, and that was demonstrated again on his second goal of the night.

A detailed look at Josef Martinez’s display in the 4-1 win over Vancouver on Saturday (Stats via @StatsZone)

Don’t miss: MLS Defensive Player of the Week: Week 3

Martinez and his Atlanta teammates sit third in the Eastern Conference after three weeks, having picked up six points following two big wins. They opened the season with that shock 4-0 defeat in Houston but have bounced back well in front of their own fans against DC United and Vancouver. They will hope to put in a better display on the road at Minnesota next time out.

2018 Key Transfers: Atlanta United

As the 2018 MLS season closes in, we will run through the key additions and losses for all 23 teams over the course of the winter transfer window. There have been a number of key signings and significant trades which should ensure the new season is as exciting as ever before. Today we look at all Atlanta United‘s key transfers and what it could mean for them in their second MLS campaign…

Atlanta United’s debut MLS season was undoubtedly a success. The Five Stripes grew into one of the most exciting teams the league has ever seen but more importantly, they created a passionate and vibrant soccer culture in the city of Atlanta. They set records for the highest average attendance per game as well as the total season attendance record. Mercedes-Benz Stadium won’t be an easy place for anyone to visit again in 2018. Atlanta’s aim will be to ensure they build on an excellent debut campaign by once again making the playoffs, but with the expectation to go further than the Knockout Round this time around…

Key signings

Ezequiel Barco: The biggest signing of the MLS offseason so far. The 18-year-old Argentine winger joins Atlanta from Independiente as the most expensive signing in MLS history at around $15 million. His capture has turned heads across the league and surely in Europe too, given how highly regarded he is. This is not the sort of signing MLS clubs make. Barco is an agile, creative midfielder who can play wide or behind the striker. He is rapid with and without the ball and will undoubtedly get Atlanta fans off their feet. The prospect of Barco, Almiron and Martinez together will strike fear into any opponent and his signing should only increase the number of chances the Five Stripes create.

Darlington Nagbe: Not only have Atlanta improved their attacking threat by adding Barco, but they’ve acquired one of the league’s most consistent and dangerous playmakers in Nagbe. Atlanta technical director Carlos Bocanegra said he was their top target this offseason and they wasted no time in making a blockbuster trade with Portland back in December. Nagbe is entering his eighth consecutive MLS season and first away from Portland. If he can settle into his new surroundings quickly, he’ll ensure Atlanta are one of the league’s top contenders, as they plan to be.

Franco Escobar: Atlanta have also focused on their backline this offseason and the addition of Franco Escobar is important as the young Argentine should slot straight into the starting lineup. He will be versatile enough to play as part of a three-man defensive setup, or alternatively as a right-back in a more traditional four-man defence. He arrives from Newell’s Old Boys where he broke through three years ago and will be expecting to develop well under the guidance of Tata Martino.

Notable Departures

Yamil Asad: The loss of Asad is significant for Atlanta but it might not be felt if Nagbe and Barco hit the ground running in the way that is expected of them. Asad was on loan for the 2017 season from Velez Sarsfield and despite Atlanta’s best efforts to agree a deal that would bring him back for 2018 and beyond, Asad has decided to move on. The club couldn’t agree a suitable deal with the midfielder and his rights are now being sold by the club. He scored seven goals and added 13 assists in 2017 and so those numbers will need to be replaced by the likes of Nagbe and Barco.

Carlos Carmona: He started 31 games last season but Carmona won’t be returning to the Atlanta midfield for the 2018 season. The club agreed to sell the experienced Chilean to Colo-Colo after weeks of speculation, with personal reasons the main factor in the end. His loss leaves a hole in the defensive midfield spot for Atlanta, with Jeff Larentowicz the only established name ready to play the position. Expect additions in that area before the season begins.

Tyrone Mears: He might have only played in 21 of the 34 regular season games last season but the loss of Mears will have removed some key experience from the Atlanta dressing room. The English defender scored one goal and added one assist last season and has now joined Minnesota after the Five Stripes declined his option for 2018. He might not be the biggest miss on the field but his absence might well be felt off of it.

DC United set to sign Yamil Asad in exciting $1.5m move

DC United‘s attack should be a lot better in 2018. Argentinian winger Yamil Asad is set to join the club in a big-money move that will see the Eastern Conference side pay out around $1.5 million for his services, according to The Washington Post’s Steven Goff.

The 23 year old is set to join DC on loan from Velez Sarsfield for $300,000, with the option to make the move permanent in December for a further $700,000. But as well as paying his parent club, DC United will send $500,000 in allocation money to Atlanta United to acquire his MLS rights.

Asad spent the 2017 season on loan with Atlanta and impressed on the left wing alongside fellow attackers Josef Martinez and Miguel Almiron. He ended the season with seven goals and 13 assists in 32 regular season games.

Atlanta were desperate to retain Asad’s services for the 2018 season but had difficulty in striking a deal with the player. After negotiations broke down twice, the club made the decision to sell on his rights. Minnesota had expressed a strong interest but it looks like DC have won the race for the dynamic forward.

Asad will undoubtedly improve DC’s attacking play. The club finished bottom of the Eastern Conference in 2017 and failed to score in half of their games. They were the league’s joint-lowest scoring team last season, scoring just 31 times. Asad contributed to 20 goals alone so he should instantly improve the team’s fortunes in the final third.

Ben Olsen will have a wealth of attacking options to choose from this season. Darren Mattocks has joined the club and will likely share striking responsibilities with Patrick Mullins and Bruno Miranda. Paul Arriola, Luciano Acosta and Zoltan Stieber will then compete with Asad in behind the forwards.

DC are preparing to move into new stadium Audi Field in July but will have to play 12 of their first 14 games away from home as a result. The technical ability and eye for goal that Asad possesses will therefore prove to be vital if Olsen sets the team up to counter-attack on the road.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Atlanta United vs LA Galaxy

Major League Soccer: Atlanta United vs LA Galaxy

Mercedes-Benz Stadium – Wednesday, September 20 – 19:00 ET (00:00 BST)

Match Odds: Atlanta 4/9 – Draw 15/4 – LA Galaxy 5/1

Atlanta United vs LA Galaxy: Preview

Atlanta United take on LA Galaxy for the first time ever on Wednesday night, in a game that could essentially end the Galaxy’s 2017 season.

The Five Stripes are in good form and have enjoyed a stellar debut season in Major League Soccer. They can move a step closer to confirming their playoff spot with a win here, while probably ending the Galaxy’s hopes in the process.

Atlanta have gone unbeaten through four games, scoring 15 goals in the process. Their move to the new Mercedes-Benz Stadium has proved seamless too. They’ve not lost at their new home and Wednesday’s match will be the fourth of six consecutive home games.

Embed from Getty Images

Victory on Wednesday would see Atlanta move ahead of Columbus Crew and into fourth place in the East. That would leave them on course to secure homefield advantage in the playoffs – something Tata Martino will be hoping to confirm.

The LA Galaxy team held a behind-closed-doors meeting after Saturday’s heavy defeat. That only happens when a team is in crisis. And make no mistake about it, the Galaxy are in a crisis. Jobs are on the line and players will be axed at the end of the campaign if they don’t improve.

Sigi Schmid’s job was to turn their fortunes around and get them into a playoff position come the end of the regular season. But he has not been able to do that, even with the expensive DP addition of Jonathan Dos Santos.

LA have gone 1-5-2 since Schmid took over the reigns. They are nine points outside the playoff spots in the West and don’t look like a team on the up.

Defeat to Atlanta on Wednesday night would essentially end the Galaxy’s season. It would leave them with a nine-point gap to make up over their final five games. But they still have to travel to Sporting KC, Houston and FC Dallas on the final day.

Atlanta United vs LA Galaxy: Team News

Atlanta United will welcome back centre-back Leandro Gonzalez Pirez after he served his one-game suspension. Zach Loyd is out for the season. Greg Garza is listed as questionable after missing Saturday’s match with a hamstring problem.

LA Galaxy will once again be able to call on Jermaine Jones after he served his suspension. He will expect to come into a side that could be drastically changed after Saturday’s crushing loss to Toronto. Robbie Rogers, Sebastian Lletget, Baggio Husidic and Pele Van Aanholt are all out for the season. Bradley Diallo left Sunday’s game in the first half with a hamstring injury and won’t feature here. Daniel Steres is also expected to miss out.

Atlanta United vs LA Galaxy: Key Points

Atlanta United’s last five: L/D/W/W/D

LA Galaxy’s last five: L/L/W/D/L

Key Stat: Atlanta have scored 13 goals in three games since moving to Mercedes-Benz Stadium. That’s the same amount as LA Galaxy have scored in their last 12 MLS outings in total.

Key Player: Josef Martinez – The Venezuelan striker is hot right now. He has scored back-to-back hat-tricks for Atlanta and has seven in his last three games. His treble against Orlando on Saturday took his season total to 16 in 14 matches. He’s only three goals off David Villa in the race for the Golden Boot and will hope to close that gap further with another strong display here.

Atlanta United vs LA Galaxy: Prediction

Atlanta United 3-1 LA Galaxy – The Galaxy need to respond from Saturday’s humiliating 4-0 home loss. However, they couldn’t have really picked a worse place to have to go than Atlanta. The Five Stripes have been scoring for fun and should pick apart a Galaxy defence that can’t stop conceding. You would assume LA will show some spirit as they aim to impress Sigi Schmid enough to keep their jobs into next season. But this one looks like it should end in a home win, with Atlanta set to move up to fourth in the East.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Atlanta United vs New England Revolution

Major League Soccer: Atlanta United vs New England Revolution

Mercedes-Benz Stadium – Wednesday, September 13 – 19:00 ET (00:00 BST)

Match Odds: Atlanta 3/5 – Draw 3/1 – New England 4/1

Atlanta United vs New England Revolution: Preview

Atlanta United face New England Revolution at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Wednesday night, in what is a pivotal battle for the Eastern Conference’s playoff picture.

The hosts started life in their new stadium with a convincing 3-0 win over FC Dallas on Sunday night. The venue may have changed but the Five Stripes’ impressive home record continues. They have not lost in seven at home, scoring in every single home match this season.

Tata Martino will have been especially delighted with Sunday’s win as it ended a run of four games without victory. Atlanta sit sixth coming into Wednesday’s game, with this being one of their games in hand over the sides above them.

They are four points ahead of the Revolution in eighth place. But New England have played two games more so this is a huge game for the visitors.

The glaring problem for the Revs is that they haven’t won an away game all season. They are the only MLS team that can say that this year, not that you’ll hear New England fans voicing that fact with anything but a sense of despair.

But as things stand heading into the final stretch, the Revolution are still in a position to make the playoffs. Their home form is strong and they have put together a good run of form in recent weeks, winning five of their last eight.

They know they must start winning on the road to give themselves a realistic chance of making the postseason. But doing so at Atlanta United’s shiny new home, with over 40,000 fans roaring on poses an even trickier task than usual for the visitors.

This will be the first ever clash between the two sides. They will meet at Gillette Stadium in the reverse fixture on September 30. That will be Atlanta’s first road game after their current six-match home stretch ends in a few weeks.

Atlanta United vs New England Revolution: Team News

Atlanta United remain without goalkeeper Alec Kann. Kenwyne Jones remains a doubt with a knee problem. Tata Martino might make a few changes to his starting lineup, with Saturday’s game against Orlando City in mind.

New England Revolution remain without Kelyn Rowe. Lee Nguyen and Diego Fagundez recovered from knocks in time to face Montreal on Saturday and should be ready to go again here.

Atlanta United vs New England Revolution: Key Points

Atlanta United’s last five: D/D/L/D/W

New England Revolution’s last five: W/L/L/W/W

Key Stat: New England Revolution are the team in MLS yet to win an away game this season. They have gone 0-10-3 away from Gillette Stadium in 2017.

Key Player: Josef Martinez – The pacey Atlanta forward has struggled to get a consistent run of games as a result of injuries all season. But when he’s played, he’s looked dangerous. He has ten goals and one assist in 12 games this term and will look to hurt the Revs defence, so long as he plays here.

Atlanta United vs New England Revolution: Prediction

Atlanta United 2-0 New England Revolution – While the Revolution have looked like a solid outfit in recent weeks, their terrible road record looks unlikely to end here. The Five Stripes are in high spirits. They’ve got an incredible new stadium to play in and will be looking to put on a show here. A win on Wednesday would put them into a seriously strong position, as far as playoff hopes go. That’s how we see it going. Home win.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Orlando City vs Atlanta United

Major League Soccer: Orlando City vs Atlanta United

Orlando City Stadium – Friday, July 21 – 19:00 ET (00:00 GMT)

Match Odds: Orlando City 11/8 – Draw 5/2 – Atlanta United 17/10

Orlando City vs Atlanta United: Preview

Orlando City take on Atlanta United for the first time in history on Friday night. The two sides are separated by just a point in the Eastern Conference, so this could prove to be a real six-pointer.

Neither side has played a game for over two weeks as a result of the Gold Cup break. Atlanta come into Friday’s game in fourth, one point and two places higher than Orlando.

The Lions know the pressure is on them to get a win in front of their own fans. They can leapfrog Atlanta with a victory and put themselves well on track for a first-ever playoff spot.

Orlando City fell 3-1 at home to Toronto in their last game before the break. That result stretched their home winless run to four games, with a 3-1 US Open Cup defeat to Miami FC included.

Jason Kreis has had a long time to prepare for this game. A victory will put the Lions back on track. A defeat would leave them in trouble at a vital stage of the season.

Atlanta should come into Friday’s match in good spirits. They picked up a 4-2 win over San Jose before the two-week break. That victory came just days after they won 2-0 at Columbus Crew.

Despite being an expansion side, Atlanta have impressed from the word ‘go’. They have a strong squad, with difference-makers across the midfield and attack.

They will undoubtedly fancy their chances of leaving Orlando with all three points. Although even a draw would leave the visitors in a prime position to secure postseason soccer at the first attempt.

This will be the first ever meeting between the two sides. Although given the attacking nature of both teams, this has the potential to be a thriller. Orlando and Atlanta have goals in them, so you don’t want to miss this one.

Orlando City vs Atlanta United: Team News

Cyle Larin was called up to the Canada squad for their quarter-final clash with Jamaica on Thursday night so he will be unavailable for Orlando. Rafael Ramos is still ruled out through injury. Jose Aja is one booking away from suspension and will need to watch his step.

Atlanta United are set to see Brad Guzan between the sticks for the first time. The long-time Premier League goalkeeper was released from USMNT duty after the group stages of the Gold Cup, so is expected to start here. The visitors will be without Romario Williams, who has been at the Gold Cup with the Jamaica squad for the past few weeks. They will still be without injured trio Jacob Peterson, Kenwyne Jones and Alec Kann.

Orlando City vs Atlanta United: Key Points

Orlando City’s last five: D/D/L/W/L

Atlanta United’s last five: W/L/W/W/W

Key Stat: Atlanta are in the best form of their season, having won three-straight MLS games. They have scored seven in that time, conceding twice.

Key Player: Josef Martinez – The Atlanta striker has been excellent when fit this season. He netted twice in the win over San Jose last time out and should be raring to go here. His pace will cause Orlando all kinds of problems on the counter-attack.

Orlando City vs Atlanta United: Prediction

Orlando City 1-3 Atlanta United – Both sides know a win here would put them in a really strong position in the East. However, it’s tough to predict how both sides will cope after a long break from action. Atlanta have goals in them and will look to pick Orlando off on the break. While the loss of Cyle Larin will take away a real threat for the Lions. Atlanta to make it three wins on the spin.