In their first regular season game, Atlanta United take on the Houston Dynamo in Houston!
Where to watch/listen
Time: 3:55 PM Eastern Time
Watch: Univision (In spanish but SAP works) and Univision Deportes Streaming Online
Radio: 92.9 The Game with Jason Longshore and Mike Conti
D 0-0 vs. Charleston Battery
1-1 (3-4 pen.) vs. New England Revolution
I think Tata is going to play a 4-3-3 as the formation worked very well and the 4-2-3-1 and 3-5-2 formations didn’t in the preseason. Barco is out for 4-6 weeks and so it leaves an opening at the Left Midfield position. Carleton impressed during preseason and is a great player but I don’t think he plays. I would love to see Carleton get the start as a 17 year old but I think Tata will go with Gressel.
Atlanta did decently enough in preseason but some major problems still remain. Throughout preseason, Atlanta registered tons of shots on goal and had a lot of chances but couldn’t put them away. I hope it is only a preseason problem but with this good of an attacking team, it shouldn’t carry over into the regular season but expect for there to be some easy missed chances as it’s earh in the season. The second thing that is a problem is chemistry. Thankfully, this will be fixed after the first few games by just playing and training together but on a lot of overlapping runs, the through balls were misplaced. Hopefully Atlanta can figure out these two problems and get to the point where they were st last year and possibly even better.
Houston went unbeaten in preseason this year and did pretty well last year in the league making the Western Conference Finals. In the offseason, Houston got rid of striker Cubo Torres and their attacking midfielder Alex. They were pretty important last year but Houston also put together a new look as they added attacking midfielder Tomás Martinez who will be dangerous in the attack.
Last year, Atlanta played Houston and destroyed them as Almiron got a hat trick. It was an impressive display by the Five Stripes but it won’t happen again as that was basically their B team. They are a good counter attacking team and can sometimes play similar to Atlanta as they love possession.
They played New England last week and came out in a 4-3-3 and I think we can expect that again from Wilmer Cabrera. When playing a team like Atlanta who is good in possession and on the counter, usually there are two holding midfield options (Cabrera most likely only plays Juan Davis Cabezas) that a manager puts out there but Cabrera is an attacking manager so I don’t think that will happen. Houston will try to stay compact to force turnovers, then capitalize on their speedy front line with an explosive counter-attack. That will allow Atlanta to press and create dangerous chances after dispossesing the Dynamo.
Houston’s attack really scares me and I think it’s very possible they pull out a win but I think Atlanta with Martinez and Almiron as well as Mr. Clean Sheet in goal will win.
Atlanta 2-0 Houston (Martinez & Almiron)
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