Last weekend was a busy one in the Atlanta United offices. With the Mexican national team in town at the Georgia Dome, interest from the media was high on the recent developments around the club.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution's Doug Roberson spoke to Atlanta United President Darren Eales about a few topics. One was the possibility of Mercedes-Benz Stadium hosting a future MLS All-Star Game.
With the stadium becoming a venue of choice for major events, it is easy to see why Major League Soccer would want to host their summer showcase in Atlanta. In the last ten years, it is common for the league to schedule its All-Star Game at one of its newer venues.
In addition to the All-Star Game, Roberson spoke with Eales about the team's Academy tryout process. FC Dallas was cited as a model for the new Atlanta United Academy. The work done by Oscar Pareja in creating the Academy in Frisco years ago, combined with his willingness as the head coach to play young talent, has made FC Dallas the envy of many clubs around MLS. In fact, our friends at Big D Soccer recently discussed five more Academy products who could be signed to homegrown deals.
Players from as far north as Dalton have been signed to the Academy. Roberson mentioned players from as far south as Macon as being part of the final tryouts for the Academy teams. Academy Director Richard Money was impressed by the level of talent he has observed, telling Roberson that they "could have picked two teams at least, in every age group."
With news coming out about the promise of the Academy, the potential for major signings like Andres Guardado and/or Carlos Vela, and hosting major events like the MLS All-Star Game, it looks like it will be a busy summer for Atlanta United fans.