Atlanta United bounced back in a big way Saturday afternoon
Nearly two weeks after a dreadful 3-1 loss to DC United at brand new Audi Field, the Five Stripes were back at it in Colorado. It’s safe to say that Atlanta took out their frustrations on a lowly Rapids squad.
All things considered, this match was over at the 20 minute mark. Atlanta could have easily poured it on but facing a span of three matches in eight days as well as the playoffs quickly approaching, it was better to just sit back and let the match play out.
The Five Stripes wasted no time jumping on arguably the worst team in MLS with Miguel Almiron scoring in just the 10th minute. Miggy would again score eight minutes later off a beautiful assist from Josef Martinez.
Hector Tito Villalba would round out the scoring with his goal in the 37th minute.
Colorado would have a few chances in the 2nd half but honestly Atlanta was (rightfully so) in cruise control.
Atlanta is now 9-0-1 following a loss or draw this season and is rapidly approaching clinching the coveted knockout round bye.
Wednesday night Atlanta United head to the Bay Area to face the San Jose Earthquakes. San Jose comes in a league worst 4-8-16. Hopefully Atlanta gets off to a similar start as Saturday afternoon and are able to sit back or even rest some players in the 2nd half. It is vital to start getting our players some rest with a double game week with cross-country travel as well as the playoffs nearing.
The much needed win puts Atlanta United at 57 Points (28 GP 2.03 PPG 17-6-5) on the season with six games remaining. If they continue at this pace they will fall just shy of the MLS record of 69 points set by Toronto just last season.
Also of note: New York Red Bulls (28 GP 1.96 PPG 17-4-7 55 Points ) face DC United Sunday afternoon. A DC win or draw would really help in the Supporters’ Shield race. NYCFC (49 Points 1.69 PPG 14-7-8) have really fallen off as of late which bodes well for the Five Stripes in multiple ways. If Atlanta manages to finish the season four points clear of NYCFC, an automatic berth to the 2019 CONCACAF Champions League will be scored. Also NYCFC removing themselves from the equation clears the way for Atlanta and NYRB to secure the knockout round byes
Continue on to the next page for a full scoring and statistical breakdown and a look ahead to what’s next.