The talk in the press box after yesterday’s Atlanta United 4-0 win over Chicago was the crowd. For an open air stadium without a roof, it was really loud in Bobby Dodd Stadium yesterday. The ATL thunderclap chant went over incredibly well, as did the “Atlanta” “United” back and forth across the stadium. Simple things, but they came across incredibly well.
The most impressive thing to me while calling the game was early in the second half. United needed a lift. They had been playing against a ten-man Chicago team that packed eight players in front of their goal. The Fire looked like two lines of four in their defensive third of the field. This made it incredibly hard for Atlanta to break down and Tata Martino’s squad was growing frustrated.
The crowd started the thunderclap and it just kept getting louder and louder in the stadium. It really seemed to give the players a boost and the intensity picked back up. Miguel Almiron began to increase the pace of the game, playing faster and faster, until he found Josef Martinez between the two Chicago center backs. They combined on Martinez’s first goal in the 60th minute and the contest was effectively over at that point.
Credit to the 17’s, they put in a strong shift yesterday and, from my vantage point, had an impact on the game when the team needed them.
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A recap of all of the USL changes ahead of their opening weekend next week (SoccerNation)
A recap of the action from Australia’s A-League (FourFourTwo)