Atlanta United was unable to make it two wins out of two against Charlotte FC this season after falling 1-0 to an olimpico goal in front of over 32,000 fans at the Bank of America Stadium on Sunday. Atlanta United’s record is now 3-2-1 and is in 4th place in the Eastern Conference.
As already mentioned, the lone goal, an olimpico, came from Jordy Alcivar in the 11th minute of the match.
It’s no secret that Atlanta United has issues defending set pieces, but this isn’t one of those examples. This all comes down to Brad Guzan, in my opinion. Considering he got a hand on the ball when it was whipped in, the American goalkeeper should either pluck the ball out of the air or at the very least push the ball over the crossbar.
Atlanta United had various opportunities to at least equalize the scoreline. Homegrown player Caleb Wiley came on for the final 10 minutes and nearly headed the ball into the back of the net in the dying minutes of the match, but his effort went just wide. Atlanta finished the match with 1.34 xG from 16 shots, while Charlotte finished with .90 xG from 15 shots.
“We wanted to have more chances and better chances than the opposition. I think we accomplished that today,” Pineda said in the post match press conference.
The injury situation at Atlanta United is certainly not helping Gonzalo Pineda at the moment. With recent injuries to Ozzie Alonso, Matheus Rossetto, and Josef Martinez, the Mexican manager is having to come up with some different lineups. Today, the team started off in a back three system, with Dom Dwyer and Marcelino Moreno/Thiago Almada playing as the front two.
Around the 60th minute, Pineda made some personnel changes, which also changed the formation to a four back system. Dirty South Soccer managing editor Joe Patrick made a good point on the bird app regarding the decision to start with three center backs:
I'm very in favor of Atlanta switching to a back 3 late in games to deal with other teams pushing with 2 forwards, and very not in favor of starting with a back 3 simply bc the opposition plays with 2 forwards. Too much conservative play in possession with these three CBs.— Joe Patrick (@japatrick200) April 10, 2022
Ronaldo Cisneros made his debut against Charlotte. He could be important for Atlanta United as the season continues while Josef continues to recover from his recent knee surgery.
Atlanta United has a chance to bounce back from this loss when Brandon Vazquez and FC Cincinnati come to the Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Saturday.