Atlanta native and United States youth national team goalkeeper Cody Cropper has stated his desire to one day play for his hometown MLS club, Atlanta United. Talking to Northern Pitch, Cropper says that there are only two MLS teams that he'd ever want to play for and AUFC are one of them.
"There are really only two teams I have a desire to play for - Minnesota United & Atlanta United. I have personal ties to both cities, and I would love to end up there. I know [Minnesota United president] Nick [Rogers]. We've had a few conversations about them buying my rights in MLS or bringing me in down the road. At this point, though, time will tell what ends up happening."
-Cody Cropper; Source: Northern Pitch
Atlanta United could have a big advantage being the only team in the southeast (Florida doesn't count. Florida is Florida.) considering all of the professional talent that has come from this area. Most players have a desire to play close to their home and there are a lot of players from the southeast, not just Georgia.
Much like the Braves had a huge following in their hayday and became the team of the south in baseball, Atlanta has that opportunity in MLS. They could benefit from locale and talent in the same way that the Braves did for so many years. The southeast is a proud region and all of the talent that comes from it will not hesitate to come and join the club once it gets up and running.
We'll probably see more stories like Cropper's in the near future of other players from this area having a desire to come and play for their regional team. That can only help this club as it enters the league and competes with other clubs for talent.